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Archives - June 2007

June 29, 2007

"Conservative Global Warming Sell-out?" - "Should conservatives give up the fight just as the tide is turning in their favor in the debate over global warming?" (Steven Milloy, FoxNews.com)

"Al Gore no competition for The Great Canadian Outdoors" - "Having declared the science of climate change “well and truly over”, the Tides Foundation, in partnership with the Ontario government, is sending thousands of public high school students home for summer break with a DVD copy of Al Gore’s Academy Award-winning An Inconvenient Truth.

“The debate over the science of climate change is over”, said Tim Draimin, Executive Director of Tides Canada Foundation. “We need to focus on innovative ways to respond to the global warming challenge. An Inconvenient Truth helps all viewers—students, teachers, and parents (emphasis CFP’s) —think about the long-term implications of our lifestyle and what we need to do to build a sustainable Canada.”

Ontario Environment Minister Laurel Broten shares her support; “We are pleased to partner with Tides Canada Foundation to distribute An Inconvenient Truth to Ontario schools. Today’s announcement is moving Ontario forward in the battle against climate change by inspiring students to reduce their environment (sic) impact. We are growing a new generation of environmental leaders in our schools who will help us build a strong Ontario for many generations to come.”

Following the Tides Canada announcement of its gift to students, Michael Chernoff, Director of EnCana Corporation, one of the largest independently owned oil and gas companies in the world—offered schools copies of The Great Global Warming Swindle that purports to challenge current climate change dogma." (CFP)

Just in it for the money: "Gore says campaigning for climate, not presidency" - "NEW YORK - Al Gore insists he's campaigning for the environment these days, not for president." (Reuters)

Megabucks in scares and scams: "Al Gore's $100 Million Makeover" - "Not long ago, he was the butt of jokes--lockbox, earth tones, a postelection beard. Then he dusted off an old slide show and jumped with both feet into the private sector. The untold story of how an epic loser engineered what may be the greatest brand makeover of our time." (Fast Company)

The '7 Point Pledge' announced by Al Gore to rally support against global warming (Associated Press)

Or, better yet, take the GREENer pledge.

"Digging up the roots of the IPCC" - "The UN's all-powerful climate change panel is no straightforward scientific body. It is a deeply political organisation that was born out of disenchantment with progress." (Tony Gilland, sp!ked)

"New Study On The Prediction Skill Of The Multi-Decadal Global Climate Models" - "On May 31, 2007 there was an article in Nature by Harvey Leifert that was titled “Warmer world gets wetter - Satellite observations suggest climate models are wrong on rainfall”." (Climate Science)

"Hurricane Hysteria" - "Besides being darned good forecasters, the good people at the National Hurricane Center are also paragons of social sensitivity. Consequently, storms are given names reflective of the cultures through which they are likely to pass. Hurricanes in the Atlantic basin are given anglicized names or ones that are roughly familiar in both English and Spanish. Alberto, Bob, Gloria. In the Eastern Pacific, where storms frequently hit western Mexico, almost all the names are purely Spanish.

In this vein, we’d like to vote that this year’s “H” storm in the Atlantic be given the name Hysteria. As in caused-by-global-warming-hysteria. As in the perception that there’s been a tremendous increase in the damages caused by these storms caused by global warming.

The name should be “Hysteria,” because that’s simply, flatly, untrue." (WCR)

"Climate change sceptics criticise polar bear science" - "As the poster child for the climate change generation polar bears have come to symbolise the need to tackle climate change. But their popularity has attracted the attention of global warming sceptics funded by the oil industry, who have started to attack polar bear science." (New Scientist)

"Polar Bear Blog - Revisionist Theory" - "Its been a cool June, cloudy, misty, foggy, you name it. We've had some nice days, even nice hours between cloud banks, but it has been cool enough to change my little ice breakup prediction.

May looked like it heralded an early spring and it did for a bit. But now we sit at the end of June and while the bay looks completely open near Churchill, most of it remains ice locked. In fact, there is at least two, if not, three times the amount of ice remaining than at this time last year. This big pad of ice is what's keeping us cool and cloudy and unless a July heat wave hits, breakup will probably wait until the end of July as it usually does." (Polar Bear Alley)

"The Darfur Genocide and Global Warming" - "Recently, the new UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said that the root cause of the current genocide in Darfur is … global warming. Now if you've been following the tragedy of the Darfur region in the African nation of Sudan, you know how absurd that statement is." (Fred Thompson Report)

"Banks seek tougher carbon trading standards" - "PARIS: A group of major banks including Morgan Stanley and Barclays Capital on Thursday proposed tough new standards for the trading of carbon offsets, in a bid to prevent a public backlash against one of the fastest-growing sectors in finance.

"We've got to be sure that the carbon market is not associated with players whose practices are perceived as harming the system," said Imtiaz Ahmad, the vice president of European Carbon Investors and Services, a group of banks that trade emissions credits.

"We need to prevent confusion and ensure that there is public confidence," said Ahmad, who also is the head of emissions trading at Morgan Stanley in London." (James Kanter, IHT)

No worries! The public is already quite confident hot air trading is a scam, pure and simple.

"World Bank to Focus on Climate in Latin America" - "LONDON - Helping countries both prepare for climate change and fight it will be a key focus for the World Bank's work in Latin America over the next 12 months, its regional head Pamela Cox told Reuters." (Reuters)

"EPA ex-chief predicts U.S. will curb emissions" - "Former Bush administration Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Christine Todd Whitman predicts the United States will respond to global climate change by enacting mandatory limits on carbon dioxide emissions from power plants and industries but that no action will occur before the 2008 elections." (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

  And this would be the very same Christine Todd Whitman who didn't know the difference between the Kyoto and Montreal Protocols or what they purported to address?

Oh boy... "Danger of climate change equal to nuclear war" - "MOSCOW - Global climate change defies forecasting. Unprecedented heat, floods, droughts and typhoons brought about by climate change cause tremendous damage.

The number of such calamities has doubled over the last 10 years, according to the Russian Emergency Situations Ministry.

Some experts think there is nothing to worry about-periodic alterations in the climate are normal. Some believe the general alarm is the result of a mere lack of knowledge. But then, the danger posed by climate change is no smaller than the danger posed by nuclear war, and we have to face and evaluate it, however vague it might appear.

There is no way to hide from global warming. In fact, the repercussions of climate change might be even worse because the entire climatic system will be thrown out of balance. The average surface temperature is going up, and so are annual deviations from it." (Viktor Danilov-Danilyan for RIA Novosti)

"Key US Senators Reach Deal on CO2 Emissions" - "WASHINGTON - A US Senate panel Wednesday began drawing up a sweeping law that would put mandatory caps on greenhouse gas emissions after a key Republican endorsed the idea." (Reuters)

They need to make up their minds... "Canada Must Charge Firms a Lot for Emissions - Panel" - "OTTAWA - Canada's government will eventually have to charge companies a much higher price than anticipated for polluting the atmosphere if it is to stand any chance of meeting promises on cleaning up the environment, a panel said on Wednesday." (Reuters)

... are they talking about carbon dioxide or atmospheric pollution -- they are not the same thing.

"Kyoto: Not For All The Coal In China" - "Pollution Control: China's booming economy has made it the world's biggest polluter. So why is it exempt from Kyoto, and why are the greenies so silent? Should we stop buying Chinese goods to fight global warming?" (IBD)

"Backlog Grows in China Carbon Credit Applications" - "BEIJING - A queue is growing of Chinese energy and industrial enterprises awaiting UN approval to sell cuts in greenhouse gas emissions to rich countries." (Reuters)

"Treaty Amended to Allow Carbon Burial Off Europe" - "OSLO - European nations have amended a maritime treaty to permit burial of greenhouse gases beneath the north-east Atlantic as part of a long-term assault on global warming, Norway said on Thursday." (Reuters)

Testimony before the United States Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works on global warming issues in the power plant sector (Marlo Lewis, Jr., CEI)

"Top Ten Democrat Energy Bill Failures" - "The Democrats recently passed Senate Energy Bill will increase the price of gasoline, do nothing for supply and production, and impose new mandates on energy providers which will increase the cost of electricity for all consumers. The Democrats claim to want to reduce prices at the pump, claim to support energy independence and help lower income Americans, but this bill fails to meet any of those goals. In particular, low and fixed income Americans will be hit hardest with higher gas and electricity costs for at least the next decade. The bill fails to secure an American energy supply that is stable, diverse, and affordable." (EPW)

"Panel Nixes Industry-Backed Mileage Plan" - "WASHINGTON -- A House committee on Thursday rejected an auto industry-backed plan to raise gas mileage standards for new vehicles." (Associated Press)

"EU Ministers Struggle Over Car Emission Rules" - "LUXEMBOURG - European Union nations struggled on Thursday to lay out a plan for rules that would force steep cuts in car emissions without distorting competition between makers of bigger and smaller vehicles in the bloc." (Reuters)

Yeah, that'll fix it Arnie: "Governor ousts head of antismog board after air quality dispute" - "SACRAMENTO—Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has removed the chairman of the California Air Resources Board, days after saying he was upset with a board decision related to Central Valley air quality.

The move, announced Thursday, comes after the panel voted to ask the federal government for an 11-year extension to bring the San Joaquin Valley in line with clean air requirements.

Robert Sawyer told colleagues in an e-mail that the Republican governor rescinded his appointment last Friday. The governor appoints all 11 members of the board.

Schwarzenegger sent Sawyer a letter saying the challenges of dealing with global warming and air pollution required "a different set of skills in order to successfully guide such complex and challenging issues through the regulatory process," according to The Sacramento Bee.

Sawyer was part of a board majority that voted June 14 to ask the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to extend the deadline to meet federal ozone standards in the valley from 2012 to 2023.

Environmental groups said the board failed to follow through on Schwarzenegger's pledge to cut pollution in half by 2010. A week after the vote, the governor issued a statement saying he was "deeply disappointed" that the board asked for the delay." (Associated Press)

"Looking before we leap" - "Healthcare news from England has been copious this past week but, oddly, virtually none of it has made its way onto our news despite its relevance for us. Instead, our media seems to be presenting us with a single portrait of nationalized healthcare in England — an idyllic one, where no one is ever denied care or ever waits, everything is free, there is plenty of money and no shortages, and everyone is healthier than us because the healthcare is better. Anytime we hear only one story, it’s time to do some investigating." (Junkfood Science)

"Do flu vaccines really protect the elderly?" - "DO FLU vaccines really protect the elderly? It's been a point of bitter dispute among flu experts. Specific studies comparing vaccinated and unvaccinated patients show the shots save lives, but national figures show little change in the numbers of elderly people dying from flu since vaccination became widespread after 1980." (New Scientist)

Let's see: 'flu deaths have been falling precipitously in the industrialized regions and this is concurrent with the greatest leap in wealth, health care and nutrition affordability the globe has ever seen... so the 'flu virus must be becoming less virulent. Wonder if they've really thought that through?

Your tax $s at work: "EPA $100K grant to help make nail salons safer for patrons and workers in King County" - "(Seattle, Wash - June 27, 2007) – Both patrons and staff of nail salons in King County, Washington, will soon breathe a little easier, thanks to a $100,000 EPA Collaborative Problem-Solving Grant. The grant was awarded to the Environmental Coalition of South Seattle (ECOSS), as part of EPA’s Environmental Justice Program. The grant awarded to ECOSS is one of 10 awarded to community-based, non-profit organizations across the country. Each received $100,000 EPA Environmental Justice Grants by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency." (EPA)

Hello! Where were you? "Wilderness almost non-existent on planet Earth: study" - "Humans have domesticated the planet to such a degree that few untouched spots remain, researchers report in a review article published in the journal Science. Earth is so tamed that conservationism should shift focus from protecting nature from humans to better understanding and managing a domesticated world, the authors said. "There is no such thing as nature untainted by people," writes Peter Kareiva, chief scientist at the Nature Conservancy, a US-based non-profit group. "Facing this reality should change the scientific focus of environmental science.'' (AFP)

"Choking on Spruce in Germany" - "Half a year ago, the storm Kyrill toppled more than 40 million trees in Germany, most of them in planned spruce forests. But now, instead of environmentally appropriate replanting, foresters are returning to monocultures." (Der Spiegel)

"Give Annan the boot" - "Former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan will head a new group intended to achieve a "green revolution" in African agriculture. The effort is largely bankrolled by Microsoft co-founder and chairman Bill Gates. If past performance is any indication, the only things likely to become greener are the numbered bank accounts of Mr. Annan and his cronies.

Lest anyone forget, Mr. Annan's tenure as U.N. secretary-general was marked by unprecedented corruption (including the Iraq oil-for-food debacle), incompetence and profligacy. The organization lacked any semblance of accountability and was (and is) populated by sleazy second-raters chosen for positions under a kind of nationality-based affirmative action program." (Henry I. Miller, Washington Times)

No comment required... When veggies ‘committed suicide’ to spread a message (The Hindu)

June 28, 2007

"Bush's visit to Africa puts spotlight on malaria" - "As the wife of the United States president tours Africa, she will be shining a spotlight on malaria as well as Aids. While the former does not grab the same headlines, it far outstrips Aids as the continent's biggest child killer, claiming one young life every 30 seconds." (Mail & Guardian)

"An alternative theory on cancer" - "Thirty-six years into the war on cancer, scientists have not only failed to come up with a cure, but most of the newer drugs suffer from the same problems as those available in the pre-war days: serious toxicity, limited effectiveness and eventual resistance." (UC Berkeley)

"When evidence-based clinical guidelines aren’t" - "There’s been a lot of talk lately that our health might be more ideally managed by the government. Some trust the government to know what’s best for us. While it might be a comforting thought to believe an omnipotent entity will take care of everything on our behalf, how many of us have investigated for ourselves the reality of that?" (Junkfood Science)

"Green Junta" - "A radical suggestion for creating a global infrastructure that is both sustainable and green might rely on nations working together to find a solution to a range of potentially devastating problems, according to Cardiff University's Peter Wells. Writing in the International Journal of the Environment and Sustainable Development, published today by Inderscience, Wells warns that of a Green Junta that could bring about a right-wing agenda by stealth, in the name of environmentalism." (Inderscience Publishers)

FLOOD! - Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it. --George Santayana (Number Watch)

"Why Britain is Likely to Experience More Flooding" - "LONDON - Monsoon summers, with short but heavy downpours, are predicted by scientists to become a feature of British weather, bringing floods that could cause around one billion pounds worth of extra damage a year." (Reuters)

"Opinions split over warming" - "EXPERTS were divided last night over whether global warming was behind this week’s downpours.

Professor Phil Jones, director of the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia, said: “It is impossible to say if global warming is responsible for specific events. But you can track trends.

“The proportion of rain that comes in heavy bursts seems to be increasing. The atmosphere is warmer and able to hold more moisture. That points to global warming.”

But Philip Stott, Emeritus Professor of Biogeography at the University of London, dismissed global warming explanations as “simplistic nonsense”.

He said: “Britain’s weather is a constant battleground between competing air masses. This week the jet stream has dragged in deep Atlantic depressions, releasing huge downpours.

“Unfortunately, it fell on a land increasingly covered by concrete, losing its ability to act as a sponge. Housing on floodplains leads to disaster, whatever the climate.” (The Sun)

"Insurance industry warns of climate disaster" - "OTTAWA -- International business executives who are urging the world's top heads of state to dramatically reduce the pollution that causes global warming are not going far enough, Canada's insurance industry charges." (Mike De Souza, CanWest News Service)

Insurance companies trying to pick your pockets? Nah...

Video: "Bruce Willis Announces New Eco-Film, 'An Unappealing Hunch'" - "Bruce Willis appeared on The Late Show with David Letterman last night and had a tremendous amount of fun playing with the whole “going green” concept. First, he came out wearing a giant wind turbine hat claiming that he’s now gone off-grid and is producing his own energy. “Dave, I’ve gone green,” he told Letterman. “I’m completely off-grid. In fact, I can’t even see the grid anymore.” (Ecorazzi)

Video: "Skeptical Dr. Fred Singer on Headline: Earth" - "This week's video features Katie Fehlinger's interview with author and noted global warming Skeptic, Dr. Fred Singer. Ok, you caught me. This was actually last week's video, but because of technical difficulties, it's now this week's video.

Dr. Singer, who is founder of the Science and Environmental Policy Project, believes that the current warming is related to a natural cycle." (AccuWeather)

"Temperatures in the United States, Greenland and the Arctic, Relationship to Ocean and Solar Cycles" (.pdf) - "The IPCC Fourth Assessment, Working Group I Report R4 devoted many pages to a discussion of mulitdecadal ocean teleconnections and various solar factors but in the end discounted them or concluded their relationship with climate changes were at best uncertain.

Multidecadal Oscillations in the Pacific and the Atlantic are acknowledged to be the result of natural processes. In the attached we show how the warm phase of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) leads to more El Ninos and general warmth and the cold phase to more La Ninas and widespread coolness. The warm mode of the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO) also produces general warmth especially across Northern Hemispheric land masses including Greenland and the Arctic and the cold phase colder temepratures over the Northern Hemisphere continents and Polar Regions. When you combine the two effects, you can explain much of the temperature variances of the past 110 years for the United States, Greenland and the Arctic.

Similarly increased solar activity when you consider more than just the solar brightness or irradiance and include other more indirect solar warming factors such as ultraviolet which through ozone chemistry warms the high and middle atmosphere in low and middle latitudes and the decrease in cosmic rays which reduces low clouds, also correlates extremely well with temperature changes in the United States and the Polar Regions.

Though correlation does not always imply causation, the strength of these relationships suggest the oceans and sun play a far more important role in climate change than the IPCC admits to." (Joseph D’Aleo and George Taylor, CCM)

"How not to measure temperature, part 14"  -"This picture comes to me via www.surfacestations.org courtesy of Dr. Roger Pielke Sr. of the University of Colorado.

It is the US Historical Climatological Network (USHCN) Station of Record for Hopkinsville, KY. The NOAA provided Max/Min Temperature Sensor is located at the observers home. The nearby air conditioner is just 10 feet from the temperature sensor. Then there's the chimney. The contribution of the portable BBQ grill to the temperature record is unknown.

The MMTS temperature sensor wasn't always mounted on the tower next to the house, it used to be in the yard, but the observer made some "improvements" over time. Note that published NOAA/NWS siting standards require a 100 foot distance from buildings." (Watt's Up With That?)

"Simulated And Observed Variability In Ocean Temperature And Heat Content by AchutaRao Et Al" - "There is a new paper on comparing ocean heat content changes with model simulations of this change, as well as an effective analysis of the role of the observation system on diagnosing this climate metric." (Climate Science)

"New Scitizen Weblog On The Importance of Heterogeneous Human Climate Forcings Has Been Published" - "A new weblog has been published on Scitizen as part of my monthly column on that website. The title is The Importance of Heterogeneous Human Climate Forcings on Skillful Prediction of Regional Climate" (Climate Science)

"Sun's Shifts May Cause Global Warming" - "His studies show that natural variations in the sun plays a major role in global warming. So are humans off the hook? And if so, why does he use compact fluorescent lightbulbs?" (Marion Long, Discover Magazine)

"Forecasts all up in the air" - "KEVIN Trenberth is head of the large US National Centre for Atmospheric Research and one of the advisory high priests of the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

A New Zealander by birth, Trenberth has had a distinguished career as a climate scientist with interests in the use of computer General Circulation Models (GCMs), the basis for most of the public alarm about dangerous global warming.

When such a person gives an opinion about the scientific value of GCMs as predictive tools, it is obviously wise to pay attention.

In a remarkable contribution to Nature magazine's Climate Feedback blog, Trenberth concedes GCMs cannot predict future climate and claims the IPCC is not in the business of climate prediction. This might be news to some people." (Bob Carter, Courier-Mail)

Nice of someone to notice: "Atmospheric aerosols: correlation is not causation" - "Aerosols in the atmosphere have been hot topics in several recent climate studies but one wonders if the pollution has made not only the atmosphere murkier but also the scientific reasoning?

In March a widely reported study in PNAS by Zhang et al. linked changes in storm tracks over the North Pacific to Asian pollution. In this case effects on radiative forcing by atmospheric aerosols supposedly increased deep convective clouds over the Pacific Ocean in winter, a finding based on long-term satellite cloud measurements (1984–2005). The blame was assigned to the aerosol effect from Asian pollution, which supposedly leads to intensified storms. Unfortunately the authors did not seem to be aware of the major problems in the satellite-based cloud data that give spurious trends owing to changes in satellites and associated instruments. In particular there were major changes in 1994 in all 3 geostationary satellites (GOES West, GOES East and GMS (Japanese)) observing the Pacific Ocean. All are known to be associated with spurious changes in cloud present in the International Satellite Cloud Climatology Project (ISCCP) data. The ISCCP record is simply not reliable for trends. The time series of the paper are perhaps more a measure of the problems with the data than they are of climate change or evidence of effects of aerosols?" (Kevin E. Trenberth, Climate Feedback)

"NASA airborne expedition chases climate, ozone questions" - "NASA's Tropical Composition, Cloud and Climate Coupling (TC4) field campaign will begin this summer in San Jose, Costa Rica, with an investigation into how chemical compounds in the air are transported vertically into the stratosphere and how that transport affects cloud formation and climate." (GSFC)

"NOAA scientists to search tropical skies" - "Scientists from NOAA’s Earth System Research Lab (ESRL) will be among 400 researchers in Costa Rica this summer to probe one of the most complex and least observed regions of Earth’s atmosphere during the rainy season. Based in San Jose, Costa Rica, the NASA-led field study will shed light on key processes related to climate change, the stratospheric ozone layer, and global chemistry. The study runs from July 2 through August 15." (NOAA Research)

"I Have a Problem with the Term Climate Change" - "Jürgen Hambrecht is CEO of the largest chemical company in the world, BASF. SPIEGEL spoke with him about German environmental policy, what to do about global warming, and how the 12th century wasn't all that bad." (Der Spiegel)

Stupid claim of the moment: "WHO: 77,000 die annually in Asia-Pacific from climate change" - "Kuala Lumpur, June 28: International experts will meet next month to discuss the threat to health posed by global warming, which directly or indirectly contributes to about 77,000 deaths annually in Asia-Pacific, the World Health Organization said today." (AP)

"House passes bill affirming global warming exists" - "WASHINGTON - The U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday, aiming to put an end to the debate over whether global warming is actually occurring, passed legislation recognizing the "reality" of climate change and providing money to work on the problem.

By a vote of 272-155, the House approved an environmental funding bill for the fiscal year starting October 1 that would increase federal investments in basic research on climate change and establish a new commission to review scientific questions that need to be addressed." (Reuters)

Another wildly speculative piece: "Study Sees Climate Change Impact on Alaska" - "Many of Alaska’s roads, runways, railroads and water and sewer systems will wear out more quickly and cost more to repair or replace because of climate change, according to a study released yesterday." (New York Times)

"UN awards most ever CO2 credits to Indian projects" - "LONDON: The United Nations has awarded more than 5.4 million carbon credits to an Indian company, including four million carbon credits in the single largest issuance of emissions permits to a Kyoto Protocol project." (Reuters)

"Norway decries EU 'protectionism' on carbon dioxide quotas" - "Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg on Wednesday accused the European Union of "protectionism" for limiting the amount of offset carbon dioxide emission quotas that can be bought from developing countries." (AFP)

"World Wildlife Fund warns against plan by Planktos, Inc." - "WASHINGTON—World Wildlife Fund today announced its opposition to a plan by Planktos, Inc. to dump iron dust in the open ocean west of the Galapagos Islands. The experiment seeks to induce phytoplankton blooms in the hopes that the microscopic marine plants will absorb carbon dioxide. The company is speculating on lucrative ways to combat climate change." (World Wildlife Fund)

"Brazil's Oil Boom Town Sinking, Faces Floods - Study" - "RIO DE JANEIRO - Brazil's coastal oil boom town of Macae, a local base for dozens of foreign companies, could face flooding as ocean levels rise and the local land mass sinks, a recent study found.

"It could be water rising or Macae sinking, or the combination of both, but the issue requires urgent attention," Claudia Lellis, head of marine studies at the state-run Brazilian Institute for Geography and Statistics (IBGE), told Reuters on Wednesday." (Reuters)

"OPEC president: calls to reduce dependence on oil could lead to scarcity of supply" - "ISTANBUL, Turkey: The president of OPEC said Wednesday that repeated calls by industrialized countries to reduce dependence on oil could lead to a reduction in supplies from the cartel.

"Today's policy announcements could translate into scarcity of supplies in the future," Mohamed Al Hamli, president of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, said at an energy conference. He noted that OPEC members are developing nations with limited resources, and it would be a "waste of badly needed funds" to invest heavily in oil production if demand is unclear.

"We need to have some sort of transparency to know what the plans are," he said. "The security of demand is a key issue for us." (Associated Press)

"House Democrats at Odds Over Energy Bill Provisions" - "Just before the July 4 deadline she set for coming up with an "energy independence" package of legislation, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is trying to pull together the pieces of an energy bill from 10 committees and warring Democratic leaders. As committees raced to wrap up bills yesterday before Monday's recess, the Democratic strategy remained unclear." (Washington Post)

"Congress wants U.S. coal industry destroyed: exec" - "NEW YORK - A senior coal company executive on Wednesday lambasted U.S. lawmakers for proposing caps on emissions blamed for global warming, saying the Democrats were out to destroy America's coal industry." (Reuters)

"Carbon Price Won't Push Power Sector Away From Coal" - "LONDON - Europe's main weapon against climate change, which makes industry buy rights to emit carbon dioxide, has not stopped power generators from using dirty coal because they can still make plenty of money from burning it." (Reuters)

"Two-year lag stalls greenhouse gas sites" - "RESEARCHERS predict it will be two years before they can confirm whether there are suitable sites to store greenhouse gases underground in NSW, as the state's coal industry committed $400 million to invest in developing clean coal technology." (The Australian)

"Kremlin Lays Claim To 460,000 Square Miles Of The Oil-Rich Arctic" - "It is already the world's biggest country, spanning 11 time zones and stretching from Europe to the far east. But Tuesday Russia signalled its intention to get even bigger by announcing an audacious plan to annex a vast 460,000 square mile chunk of the frozen and ice-encrusted Arctic." (Free Internet Press)

Oh boy... "Credit for Bad Behavior" - "There is a new service from Expedia, Travelocity and other travel websites: environmental expiation. If you wish, when you buy a plane ticket, they will figure out how much carbon your trip will be adding to the atmosphere and charge you for it. (For Boston to Los Angeles, about 3,000 miles, it comes to around $9.) The money goes to nonprofit groups that either plant trees to absorb the carbon or produce an equal amount of energy in an eco-friendly way (using windmills and such). You are still increasing the carbon in the air, but someone else, thanks to you, is reducing it by an equal amount. The net effect: no additional carbon in the atmosphere. Of course, this is all strictly voluntary. If you want to be a pig, destroy the earth for future generations and face your kids, who've learned all about global warming in second grade, that's your privilege." (Michael Kinsley, Time)

Read: 'new extortion' because this is definitely not doing you or the planet any 'service'. Save your money and the planet by not yielding to this eco-flakery -- wealth generation enriches societies whose members can then afford the luxury of enviro-concern (we build greenspace parks, preserve wildlife habitat, treat plants and critters as other than food / fuel sources...). Artificially inflating costs and inhibiting productivity is about as anti-environment as you can get.

"EU's CO2 Plan Violates US Aviation Pact - Official" - "BRUSSELS - The United States accused the European Union on Wednesday of violating a newly signed "open skies" aviation agreement by proposing to include international airlines in the EU emissions trading scheme from 2012." (Reuters)

"World Cannot Afford Nuclear Climate Solution - Report" - "LONDON - The world must start building nuclear power plants at the unprecedented rate of four a month from now on if nuclear energy is to play a serious part in fighting global warming, a leading think-tank said on Wednesday." (Reuters)

Well, we agree nukes will do nothing to address gorebull warming, however appealing nuking the source might be.

"India's "People's Cars" Spur Green Nightmare Fear" - "NEW DELHI - It may be an Indian consumer's dream -- cheap cars for US$2,500-$3,000 within reach of millions of a swelling middle class. But it could also prove to be a traffic and environmental disaster.

Nissan Motor Co. and Renault SA announced last week they were studying a US$3,000 car to compete in India against Tata Motors Ltd.'s planned low-cost "People's Car" targeted at around US$2,500 to hit the market next year.

For its supporters, cheap cars like these are what the Volkswagen Beetle was to Germany or the Mini to England -- the spoils of an economic boom for aspiring middle classes. To its detractors, India will see an explosion in traffic and pollution on its already clogged roads from its more than 1.1 billion inhabitants." (Reuters)

"A Cleaner North Sea? Ship Fuel Suppliers Hedge Bets" - "LONDON - European ship fuel suppliers are hedging their bets ahead of tighter fuel quality rules from November amid uncertainty about demand for the cleaner grade and expectations that some ship operators will ignore the new rules." (Reuters)

"Groups from around the world call for a moratorium on EU incentives for biofuels from large-scale monocultures" - "Today, more than 30 groups from around the world are calling for a Moratorium to stop the EU rush for biofuels (or agrofuels*). They warn that agrofuel production for EU markets will accelerate climate change, destroy biodiversity and uproot local communities. The signatories are visiting Brussels on 26 and 27 June to inform the European Parliament about their concerns about the impact of agrofuels on local communities, biodiversity and climate. They are sceptical about the capacity of certification projects currently being drafted in the EU to prevent any of this damage." (Joint Press Release)

Here's Lester... "Around the Globe, Farmers Losing Ground" - "WASHINGTON, Jun 27 - In 1938, Walter Lowdermilk, a senior official in the Soil Conservation Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, traveled abroad to look at lands that had been cultivated for thousands of years, seeking to learn how these older civilisations had coped with soil erosion.

He found that some had managed their land well, maintaining its fertility over long stretches of history, and were thriving. Others had failed to do so and left only remnants of their illustrious pasts." (IPS)

"Getting to the root of plant growth" - "A £9.2m research centre at the University of Nottingham will break new ground in our understanding of plant growth and could lead to the development of drought-resistant crops for developing countries." (University of Nottingham)

June 27, 2007

Bring back DDT? "Mosquitoes Have the Edge in Singapore’s Dengue War" - "SINGAPORE, June 26 — Under the sink, behind the cleaning detergents, Thurainadan Govindarajoo shined his flashlight into the shadows, searching for telltale signs of the enemy.

“People only think of the obvious places,” he said. “We’re looking for what I call the hidden habitats.” Under leaking sinks, in disused toilets, beneath potted plants: wherever a few drops of water can linger, mosquitoes can breed.

Mr. Govindarajoo is one of roughly 500 inspectors from Singapore’s National Environment Agency specially trained to conduct house-to-house search-and-destroy missions against Aedes mosquitoes, which transmit the potentially deadly dengue virus. Despite their best efforts, though, the mosquitoes appear to be winning, abetted by the boom in international travel, global warming and their own adaptability." (New York Times)

"Antique dealers in Maine upset by report on mercury" - "PORTLAND - A new federal report that highlights the dangers of antiques that contain mercury is being met with skepticism and anger by some Maine antique dealers, who fear it could hurt business." (AP)

"Chocolate, wine claims too good to be true? Diet discoveries need critical evaluation" - "EDMONTON - If you are a chocolate-eating, wine-and-green-tea-swilling health nut, do you live forever because your heart never gives out or do you just end up an overweight, caffeine-addicted, alcoholic?

That this is a legitimate question reflects the public's captivation with media reports that pleasurable foods such as chocolate, tea and red wine offer health benefits." (Chris Zdeb, The Edmonton Journal)

"The spitball diet?" - "Did you hear that a new magical weight loss “bio-granule” has been licking obesity in the United States? That’s certainly news to us!" (Junkfood Science)

"Seeing more than a child’s size" - "A mother’s sweet reminder that children come in all shapes and sizes, and that they all deserve a spot in our world and hearts." (Junkfood Science)

"More vitamin D can put more pep in seniors' steps" - "NEW YORK - Declining physical performance among some Dutch seniors may not be a simple consequence of aging, it may actually be due to a vitamin D deficiency, results of a new study suggest." (Reuters Health)

"Smothering land rights with an energy bill?" - "An official delegation from the U.S. government actually signed a U.N. document that says:

"Private land ownership is a principal instrument of accumulation and concentration of wealth and therefore contributes to social injustice. ... Public control of land use is therefore indispensable. ..."

The document was signed by then-Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Carla A. Hills, as head of the U.S. delegation, and William K. Reilly, who became administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. This 1976 Report of Habitat I: United Nations Conference on Human Settlements (subscription), contains 65 pages of specific recommendations about how governments can put an effective end to private land ownership and gain absolute control of land use.

Since then, virtually every land use policy adopted by Congress or the agencies of government has been designed to erode private property rights and grant to government the power to control all land uses. The Endangered Species Act has been hijacked and is now simply an excuse to prevent land development on private property. The Clean Water Act has been hijacked and is now another excuse to prevent the use of private land anywhere near a mud puddle. "Comprehensive planning" is another recommendation from the 1976 document that has recently come into its own, empowering government to prevent private landowners from using their own land." (Henry Lamb, WND)

"INHOFE PRAISES SUPREME COURT ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT RULING" - "WASHINGTON, DC – Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Ranking Member of the Environment and Public Works Committee, today lauded the Supreme Court’s ruling on the “National Association of Home Builders et al. V. Defenders of Wildlife et al." The Court’s 5-4 ruling overturned the Ninth Circuit decision that would have allowed the Endangered Species Act (ESA) to override other federal environmental laws by forbidding the Environmental Protection Agency from delegating water pollution control authority to the state of Arizona based on possible indirect effects to threatened and endangered species." (EPW)

"Bald eagle recovery falls short" - "In coming weeks, politicians and environmental activists will pat each other on the back to celebrate the recovery of the bald eagle and its removal from the Endangered Species List.

But those people at the same time are pulling a sleight of hand on American citizens — and essentially declaring the Endangered Species Act irrelevant in the process.

The bald eagle deserves to be delisted. Forty years ago, there were fewer than 500 nesting pairs in the Lower 48 states. Today, there are an estimated 9,750 nesting pairs. President Clinton trumpeted the bald eagle's recovery on July Fourth 1999 and said it would come off the Endangered Species List.

Then the waiting — and excuses — began. Finally, after a lawsuit by a retired Minnesota man and nearly eight years, the Fish and Wildlife Service agreed to delist the bald eagle. But the eagle will not fly free." (Rob L. Rivett and Damien M. Schiff, Washington Times)

"Crowd aims fury at regional panel" - "Land use agency is criticized for failing to allow adequate clearing of combustible materials." (LA Times)

"Finger Pointing Begins Over Tahoe FireCouncilman Blames Environmentalists" - "SAN FRANCISCO, Jun. 25, 2007 - Already the finger pointing has started. A South Lake Tahoe city councilman is blaming environmentalists for slowing efforts to clean out dead trees and brush around Lake Tahoe." (KGO)

"Northern spotted owl's decline revives old concerns" - "Habitat for the famous owl is again a hot issue, as the US seeks to set aside less old-growth forest." (The Christian Science Monitor)

Right... "Group to Look for Evidence of 'Bigfoot'" - "Researchers will visit the Upper Peninsula next month to search for evidence of the hairy manlike creature known as "Bigfoot" or "Sasquatch." (AP)

"Glastonbury goes green - but the river has gone toxic" - "It was billed as the most environmentally friendly festival ever, with a climate change campaign taking centre stage and an array of green facilities intended to help revellers cut down on their carbon footprints and their waste.

Yesterday, however, Glastonbury's eco-credentials were undermined somewhat when it emerged that festival-goers urinating in a river that runs through the site - after they had been drinking and taking drugs - had left it dangerously toxic for the surrounding wildlife." (London Independent)

"At Home Depot, How Green Is That Chainsaw?" - "ATLANTA — Home Depot sent a note a few months ago to the companies that supply the 176,000 products it sells, inviting them to make a pitch to have their products included in its new Eco Options marketing campaign.

More than 60,000 products — far more than obvious candidates like organic gardening products and high-efficiency lightbulbs — suddenly developed environmental star power.

Plastic-handled paint brushes were touted as nature-friendly because they were not made of wood. Wood-handled paint brushes were promoted as better for the planet because they were not made of plastic." (New York Times)

"UK's Met Office Sees Wet, Warm Summer for N. Europe" - "LONDON - Summer temperatures in Europe are likely to be above the long-term average, while northern parts are likely to be wetter than normal and southern regions average or drier than average, Britain's leading forecaster said on Tuesday." (Reuters)

"Rains Hit W. Europe Wheat, Drought Devastates East" - "LONDON - Europe's wheat crop has rain in all the wrong places this year, with already sodden France, Germany and Britain getting a further soaking this week, while drought has devastated countries further east." (Reuters)

"A New Excellent Paper- A Review Of Vegetation–Atmosphere Interactions And Their Influences On Mesoscale Phenomena" - "There is an excellent review paper that provides further documentation of the first-order role of land surface processes within the climate system." (Climate Science)

"Three Quarters Believe Global Warming A 'Natural Occurrence'" - "ALMOST three quarters of people believe global warming is a 'natural occurrence' and not a result of carbon emissions, a survey claimed today." (LSE)

Look out! Now it's global worming! "Scientist Implicates Worms in Global Warming" - "Jim Frederickson, the research director at the Composting Association has called for data on worms and composting to be re-examined after a German study found that worms produce greenhouse gases 290 times more potent than carbon dioxide." (Short News)

"Good-sense way to cut farming's excess gas" - "Farmers could almost meet their share of New Zealand's target under the Kyoto climate change treaty by doing something it makes financial sense to do anyway, says an economist.

The gas-cutting solution is the central claim of a report by economist Simon Terry for the Sustainability Council.

It is called A Convenient Untruth, a reference to the common claim that agriculture can do little to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions, so the taxpayer has to pick up the bill.

Farm emissions of nitrous oxide - a greenhouse gas much more potent that carbon dioxide - account for about a sixth of national emissions, twice as much as produced by all the gas and coal burned in power stations." (New Zealand Herald)

But it's the worms I tells ya, the worms!

"RealClimate: saturated confusion" - "The Gentlemen at RealClimate.ORG have decided that my article about climate sensitivity and similar articles by others are too dangerous because they show that every new molecule of CO2 causes smaller greenhouse effect than the previous molecule: the absorption gets saturated. Such a conclusion could diminish the holy power of the enhanced greenhouse effect and undermine the global efforts of scientists of good faith - and their friends, politicians of good faith, lawyers of good faith, and publishers of good faith - to globally regulate the greenhouse effect.

What do these 11 climate scientists think about the dependence of the strength of the greenhouse effect on the concentration? Well, they live in a scientific consensus which means, in this case, that none of them has any idea what the answer could be. So they invited an expert to clarify the situation.

Who is the expert? Well, it is a historian of science whose name is Spencer Weart." (The Reference Frame)

"Should Big Chill Be A Bigger Worry?" - "Reputable scientists now say the long-term threat to climate is severe cooling, not rising temperatures. In fact, our carbon emissions may just have prevented the next ice age." (IBD)

Ah, laundered results! (see picture at source for explanation) "How not to measure temperature, part 13" - "The picture [displayed on original page] is of the official USHCN climate station of record in Quitman, GA and comes to me via www.surfacestations.org volunteer Joel McDade. It is located at a residence, the observer has consented to having this NOAA weather equipment at his home." (What's Up With That?)

"A Dry Horizon for the Amazon: Climate changes are pushing rain forests to the point of no return." - "It is stunning to think that the Amazon – a humid land of frogs, anacondas and parasitic strangler figs – could disappear in this century. Environmentalists have been predicting dire consequences for the rain forest for years, but a new report from the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change finds that the Amazon could be on an irreversible course to extinction. Some researchers add to the report’s predictions saying the conservative climate models used in the IPCC’s projections underestimate regional drying." (Kristin Elise Phillips, Science Line)

And they would know this, how? Check, once more, the modelers' own admissions regarding the woeful performance of their state-of-the-art computer games:

"Principal Model Deficiencies" - "ModelE [2006] compares the atmospheric model climatology with observations. Model shortcomings include ~25% regional deficiency of summer stratus cloud cover off the west coast of the continents with resulting excessive absorption of solar radiation by as much as 50 W/m2, deficiency in absorbed solar radiation and net radiation over other tropical regions by typically 20 W/m2, sea level pressure too high by 4-8 hPa in the winter in the Arctic and 2-4 hPa too low in all seasons in the tropics, ~20% deficiency of rainfall over the Amazon basin, ~25% deficiency in summer cloud cover in the western United States and central Asia with a corresponding ~5°C excessive summer warmth in these regions. In addition to the inaccuracies in the simulated climatology, another shortcoming of the atmospheric model for climate change studies is the absence of a gravity wave representation, as noted above, which may affect the nature of interactions between the troposphere and stratosphere. The stratospheric variability is less than observed, as shown by analysis of the present 20-layer 4°x5° atmospheric model by J. Perlwitz [personal communication]. In a 50-year control run Perlwitz finds that the interannual variability of seasonal mean temperature in the stratosphere maximizes in the region of the subpolar jet streams at realistic values, but the model produces only six sudden stratospheric warmings (SSWs) in 50 years, compared with about one every two years in the real world. ..." [em added] (Climate simulations for 1880-2003 with GISS modelE, 4.5Mb .pdf)

The virtual world delivers a current one-fifth shortfall compared with actual Amazon precipitation and thus suggests future actual precipitation shortfall because projection run model output precipitation is, um... less than actual current precipitation. Dazzling!

"DeLay: Climate change expands government" - "If ever there was a window through which to view the modern liberal soul, it is the issue of climate change. Notice, did you, that it's not global warming we debate anymore, because, after all, it still gets cold in the winter. For years, liberals warned those less enlightened of us about the dangers of global warming, without much evidence, so they just changed tactics -- no longer are people to be terrified of the Earth's temperature rising, but its falling as well!

It's the ultimate liberal "heads-I-win-tails-you-lose" argument. Summer hot? Climate change! Winter cold? Climate change!" (Tom DeLay, Politico)

"Put your money where your ‘myth’ is" - "Meet the Ivy League professor and expert on forecasting who is challenging Al Gore to a $20,000 bet that he is wrong on global warming." (Brendan O’Neill, sp!ked)

Al Gore Has Not Responded to Professor's Global Warming Wager, Media Mum (Noel Sheppard, News Busters)

"Global Warming Panic: Politicians Try to Stifle Scientists" - "If you want to convince the world that an overwhelming majority of scientists believes in global warming, then start by ignoring scientists who are not true believers. First, establish lists of scientists with your approved position, then smear dissidents. Soon, up-and-coming scientists will be afraid to cross the rigid green line." (Debra Saunders, National Ledger)

Correspondence received: "The Internet Skeptic Interviewed on Dirk Thompson's Radio Deli as well as interviews in NYC" - "Hey everyone, we have some new global warming videos out. If you listen about 1:45 into the Radio Interview, one of Ohio State's esteemed professors calls in and does a fantastic job describing the Arctic Ocean model which best explains why temperature and CO2 vary together, but with CO2 lagging temperature.

Here is the Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F4eaghkUorw
Here is the PDF Presentation: http://www.stopdumbingdown.com/Dirk.pdf

Many of the videos we shot in Manhattan last month are finally making it onto the web and being broadcast on the MNN. Here are a few of them. From what I understand they have upset a lot of people and "altered people's perceptions, reality and consciousness." I guess if all you have been fed your entire life is a bunch of hogwash, the truth can quite bitter. The hate mail has been non-stop since the shows started airing. Here are just a few of the edits from the shows. All in all we filmed 30 hours, and did about 6 different shows. Note: These are not my videos, and I did not title them. Once you see how they named some of them you will understand what I mean. Remember, I was in NYC, which is a totally different place than reality.

NYC Videos:

Good heavens... "Report calls on Europe to move on global warming" - "BRUSSELS: Europe must start work now to protect power stations, transport systems and agriculture from flooding, droughts, forest fires and landslides likely to be caused by global warming, according to the draft of a report due out this week.

The draft analysis by the European Commission paints a disturbing picture of the impact of rising temperatures that will scorch the southern Mediterranean, melt Alpine and Scandinavian snows and flood low-lying coastal zones around the Continent.

Such is the scale of the potential problem that the report raises the possibility of "relocating ports, industry and entire cities and villages from low-lying coastal areas and flood plains." (IHT)

... on the basis of climate model output? How stupid can they get?

"Extreme weather should be no surprise" - "So when the weather goes "wrong", it forces us to acknowledge that mankind does not control everything, either the tide-sucking moon or the earth-shaking magma.

We can save the world by turning off the standby, but we can't always save the next-door neighbours when a hard rain starts to fall." (Christopher Howse, London Telegraph)

"Arnie: I’ll back Blair to halt global warming" - "Arnold Schwarzenegger, the Hollywood actor and Governor of California, has backed Tony Blair to lead the global fight against climate change." (The Times)

"Climate Change Is Nothing New (Ask Plato)" - "Many people are worried about global warming today. They fear that the polar ice caps will melt, raising sea levels and creating environmental chaos. Such concerns are not new." (Bruce Bartlett, IBD)

"India's emissions may be higher due to dams: Study" - "New Delhi, June 27: India's greenhouse gas emissions could be 40 percent higher than official estimates if methane released from dams is taken into account, according to a new study.

Methane -- about 23 times more powerful than carbon dioxide in terms of the amount of heat it traps -- is released from reservoirs, spillways and turbines of hydropower dams as a result of rotting carbon-containing vegetation.

But India, already one of the world's top polluters, has never measured methane emissions from its 4,500 large dams and has therefore never taken it into account in official data." (Zee News)

"Swiss climate warms twice as fast as northern hemisphere: study"  -"Switzerland's climate has since the 1970s warmed twice as fast as the average for the northern hemisphere, a Swiss public research institute said Tuesday." (AFP)

"Mont Blanc Glaciers Refuse to Shrink?" - "If you have an interest in global warming and its effect on mountain glaciers, you will be thrilled to know that there are over one million websites on the subject. Even before you get to the first site, you already know what you will find. Burning fossil fuels increases atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases, the Earth is warming, mountain glaciers are in full retreat all over the planet, delicate ecosystems are in peril, and humans who rely on the freshwater from mountain glaciers better get creative fast. Recall that in the Gore film, a great deal of attention was paid to the diminishing “snows of Kilimanjaro” – Gore has made hay in Glacier National Park as well pointing to shrinking glaciers. Retreating mountain glaciers have become a poster-child of the global warming alarmists – no presentation on the subject is complete without one." (WCR)

Yeah, hurray... "World's biggest ice sheet stable, not yet posing threat to ocean levels, researchers say" - "WELLINGTON, New Zealand — An ice sheet in Antarctica that is the world's largest — with enough water to raise global sea levels by 200 feet — is relatively stable and poses no immediate threat, according to new research." (Associated Press)

... it's just that we weren't aware of a single credible suggestion otherwise, that there is any realistic potential for that situation to change in the foreseeable future or even the vaguest justification for the headline or article at all.

"What's Your Paw Print?" - "One of the most liberal neighborhoods in America, zip code 10024, is where I live. It's full of people who carry cloth shopping bags, swear by fluorescent light bulbs, and think that George Bush is evil for not signing on to the Kyoto Protocol.

The neighborhood also ranks high in the nation in the number of pet food deliveries. The highest is the adjoining zip code, 10023. Parents and children now compete for space on the sidewalks and in the parks of the Upper West Side with the owners of medium- and large-sized dogs or, increasingly, of multiple small dogs. I wonder if these pet owners have calculated their dog's carbon paw print." (Elizabeth Powers, New York Sun)

"Poor Could See Slice of Carbon Offset Revenue" - "LONDON - Poor people from car drivers in Brazil to African villagers may soon benefit from rich world funds to fight climate change, said Jose Miguez, climate change coordinator for Brazil's science and technology ministry." (Reuters)

From CO2 Science this week:

Rising Atmospheric CO 2 Will Likely Boost Ocean Productivity: A nitrogen-fixing cyanobacterium appears to hold the key to the "greening" of the world's oceans.

Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week:
This issue's Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week comes from Victoria Land Coast, Antarctica. To access the entire Medieval Warm Period Project's database, click here.

Subject Index Summary:
Climate Oscillations (Millennial Variability - South America): Has the Little Ice Age-to-Current Warm Period transition been nothing more than the most recent phase of a persistent millennial-scale natural oscillation of climate that is totally unrelated to the historical increase in the air's CO 2 content? Studies from South America weigh in on the question.

Plant Growth Data:
This week we add new results (blue background) of plant growth responses to atmospheric CO 2 enrichment obtained from experiments described in the peer-reviewed scientific literature for: Antarctic Byrum Moss, Common Green Byrum Moss, Komatsuna, and Wheat.

Journal Reviews:
A 5,000-Year History of Major Hurricane Activity in the Western North Atlantic Ocean: How was it obtained? ... and what does it reveal?

The Paleoclimatology of Lake Baikal: What does it reveal about millennial-scale oscillations and 20th-century global warming?

Scleractinian Corals: To Hell (Decalcification) and Back: If a coral looses its skeleton, can it grow it back again?

Global Warming and Atmospheric CO 2 Enrichment: Impacts on Tree Bud-Burst: What are they? And are their consequences positive or negative?

Elevated Atmospheric CO 2 Concentrations Enhance Marine Production of DMS and CH 2 CII: Is this something about which we should be worried or happy?

Columbus Luxapallila, MS Temperature Record of the Week:
This issue's Temperature Record of the Week is from Columbus Luxapallila, MS. During the period of most significant greenhouse gas buildup over the past century, i.e., 1930 and onward, Columbus Luxapallila's mean annual temperature has cooled by 0.26 degrees Fahrenheit. Not much global warming here! (co2science.org)

"Energy crisis cannot be solved by renewables, oil chiefs say" - "The world is blinding itself to the reality of its energy problems, ignoring the scale of growth in demand from developing countries and placing too much faith in renewable sources of power, according to two leaders of the global energy industry.

The chief executive of Royal Dutch Shell today calls for a “reality check”. Writing in The Times, Jeroen van der Veer takes issue with the widespread public opinion that green energy can replace fossil fuels.

Shell’s chief gives warning that supplies of conventional oil and gas will struggle to keep pace with rising energy demand and he calls for greater investment in energy efficiency.

Instead of a great conversion to wind power and solar power, Mr van der Veer predicts, the world will be forced into greater use of coal and much higher CO2 emissions, “possibly to levels we deem unacceptable”." (The Times)

"Gas Gouging" - "At 11:25 Thursday night, the Senate passed a bill barring "price gouging" on the sale of crude oil, gasoline, or petroleum distillates. One version of the bill under consideration defined price gouging as "the charging of an unconscionably excessive price by a supplier in an affected area." Recognizing, as senators, that matters of conscience are, well, matters of conscience, the senators went on to describe such a price as, among other requirements, one that "grossly exceeds the price at which the same or similar crude oil, gasoline, or petroleum distillate was readily obtainable by other purchasers in the affected area." The House of Representatives, which has already passed similar legislation, may take up the price-gouging bill again as soon as this week." (New York Sun Editorial)

"A Nonsensical Feel-Good Energy Bill" - "Just this past week, the Senate passed an energy package that included provisions against “price gouging” at gas stations. This anti-gouging legislation criminalizes any attempt to charge an “unconscionably excessive” price at the pumps and gives federal agencies new powers to investigate alleged price-gouging situations. The fact is, however, that provisions against “price gouging” are vague, founded on a poor understanding of economics and designed solely to whip up populist sentiment against oil companies." (Pejman Yousefzadeh, Human Events)

"Pelosi's Green House" - "Environmentalism: At a time when mercury is being removed from public use as a toxic hazard, the speaker of the House wants to expand its use. How many Democrats does it take to change a light bulb?" (IBD)

"Pelosi’s Green House Costs Cash, Carries Risk" - "If you hear Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) ask how many staffers it would take to change all the light bulbs in the House of Representatives, be warned it’s not a joke. Replacing all desk lamps within her Capitol jurisdiction with energy efficient bulbs is a part of the slogan-happy Speaker’s agenda to “Green the Capitol” as well as make the country “energy independent” by Independence Day.

What isn’t part of her sloganeering are the costs and even possible health risks that come with her plans." (Amanda Carpenter, Townhall)

"Power vacuum: Dynegy's CEO calls for decisive federal leadership in curbing greenhouse gas emissions." - "Dynegy Chief Executive Bruce Williamson isn't the most likely candidate to be advocating strong measures to rein in carbon dioxide discharges. After all, Dynegy just absorbed rival LS Power Group in a merger that could double the company's CO2 emissions if eight coal-fired generating plants on the drawing boards are built around the country." (Houston Chronicle)

"U.S. Backs Clean Energy - In Asia" - "WASHINGTON - The United States and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) are joining forces to coax Asian nations to switch to cleaner forms of energy, in hopes of averting a predicted spike in carbon emissions by the world's fastest-growing region." (IPS)

"EU Lawmakers Eye 2010 for Airline Emissions Trade" - "BRUSSELS - The European Parliament's environment committee largely backs the inclusion of domestic and foreign airlines in the EU emissions trading scheme from 2010, the deputy responsible for the issue said on Tuesday." (Reuters)

"Green skies?" - "Britain's airlines are announcing new planet-friendly schemes almost by the week - but are they as green as they're painted?" (London Telegraph)

"Biotech breakthrough could end biodiesel's glycerin glut" - "HOUSTON, June 26, 2007 -- With U.S. biodiesel production at an all-time high and a record number of new biodiesel plants under construction, the industry is facing an impending crisis over waste glycerin, the major byproduct of biodiesel production. New findings from Rice University suggest a possible answer in the form of a bacterium that ferments glycerin and produces ethanol, another popular biofuel.

"We identified the metabolic processes and conditions that allow a known strain of E. coli to convert glycerin into ethanol," said chemical engineer Ramon Gonzalez. "It's also very efficient. We estimate the operational costs to be about 40 percent less that those of producing ethanol from corn." (Rice University)

"BP links with ABF for £200m biofuel site" - "BP and Associated British Foods have joined forces to build a £200m biofuel plant in Hull capable of producing 420m litres of bioethanol a year." (London Telegraph)

"Cost of milk kicked up by demand for ethanol" - "Get ready to pay $4.50 a gallon this summer -- for milk.

Gasoline prices over $3 a gallon have grabbed consumers' attention, but dairy products and other corn-dependent foods are expected to rise at an even faster rate." (Detroit Free Press)

"Japan experiments with new biofuels" - "Japanese companies have begun introducing bioethanol fuel to the market in hopes of significantly reducing CO2 emissions. Domestic production of the biofuel, particularly out of edible materials, appears to be a distant goal. Nonetheless, promising experimentation with new materials, including seaweed and scrap wood, is attracting attention." (UPI)

"Prince Charles sacked by Sainsbury's" - "Sainsbury's has dropped the Prince of Wales and the head of the Soil Association as vegetable suppliers because it says their produce did not meet the right standards, the Guardian can reveal." (The Guardian) | Charles' organic carrots rejected by Sainsbury's for being 'rotten' (London Independent)

Interestingly Charlie & Holden seem to have been sacked as suppliers due to quality issues and high carbon footprints (something Charlie has been taking a little stick over lately). So, how 'environmentally friendly' is this organic twaddle when half the produce is being thrown away as unfit for consumers? Honestly evaluated as total inputs divided by number of people fed 'organic' just doesn't shine as anything but myth and marketing scam.

June 26, 2007

"Addiction experts say video games not an addiction" - "CHICAGO - Doctors backed away on Sunday from a controversial proposal to designate video game addiction as a mental disorder akin to alcoholism, saying psychiatrists should study the issue more. Addiction experts also strongly opposed the idea at a debate at the American Medical Association's annual meeting." (Reuters)

Uh-huh... "Echinacea puts colds on the run" - "A scientific study has shown what many people have been saying for years - that there really is a herbal remedy for the common cold. The remedy, made from a group of related North American plants, also helps colds clear up more quickly, the findings suggest. Researchers in the United States pooled evidence on the anti-cold properties of Echinacea from 14 different studies – after previous studies identified no clear health benefits." (London Telegraph)

... when all else fails form slurry of non-results, dredge furiously until desired result appears.

"New Criticism of Controversial Avandia Study" - "The statistical grounds for an increased risk of heart attack get shakier." (Trevor Butterworth, STATS)

"Middle Eastern women may have vitamin D deficiency" - "NEW YORK - In certain Middle Eastern and other countries where conservative dress curtails exposure to sunlight, high levels of vitamin D supplementation may be needed to raise serum levels sufficiently in women, investigators report. "When sunlight exposure -- the main source for vitamin D in humans -- is limited," Dr. Hussein F. Saadi told Reuters Health, "much higher dietary intake of vitamin D is needed than currently recommended," especially for women who are breast-feeding." (Reuters Health)

Another 'paradox'? "Obesity associated with a lower risk of tuberculosis in older Chinese population" - "Obese or overweight Chinese individuals age 65 and older have a lower risk of developing tuberculosis than those at a normal weight, according to a study in the June 25 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals." (JAMA and Archives Journals)

"Economic Possibilities for Our Grandchildren: Most Economists Predict a Bright Future" - "Will our children and grandchildren live in a better world, or will economic and social conditions decline? Every culture has worried over this question—often for good reason. One would think that modern man, living amid ever-rising material comforts and a security unimagined by his ancestors, would have moved beyond this fear. But despite our growing prosperity there is a renewed fear in many quarters that we are living on borrowed time, because we’re running out of resources and endangering our very environment." (Robert M. Whaples, Independent Institute)

"Please be careful out there!" - "The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently announced that manufacturers of dietary supplements, vitamins, herbals will now have to test their products and ensure that they contain what is claimed on the label and that the ingredients are pure. This announcement probably came as a surprise to many consumers who mistakenly believed that supplements had been being regulated.

The FDA’s recent action was sparked after years of finding supplements adulterated with ingredients such as prescription drugs; to contain lead and other heavy metals, pesticides, glass, bacteria or other contaminants; or not even contain the vitamins or herbals listed on the label at all.

It is imperative for consumers to understand, however, that this new ruling doesn’t address if the supplements are safe and effective for the conditions they claim to remedy." (Junkfood Science)

"School bus emissions study to be released" - "A U.S. government study suggested anti-idling advocates are on the right track in an ongoing debate concerning school bus exhaust emissions." (UPI)

"Fine particulate matter from traffic may influence birth weight" - "After the scientists had investigated the effects of the exposure of adults and children to particulate matter in the past, they are now first focussing on the risks to unborn life in this recent study. This is the continuation of the GSF’s successful cooperation with the internationally renowned French research institution, with the common objective of tracing the causes of environment-related health disorders." (GSF - National Research Center for Environment and Health)

"Raging Tahoe fire's roots: 150 years of forest abuse" - "The raging fire that is denuding hillsides and darkening the clear blue waters of Lake Tahoe is the final product of 150 years of mismanagement of the Sierra Nevada ecosystem, fire management experts said Monday." (SF Chronicle)

"San Fran Bottle Ban Not Enough for Greenpeace or CNN" - "Make a crazy eco-rule that affects thousands and the mainstream media finds critics – who said it doesn’t go far enough. San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsome banned city departments from purchasing bottled water, even for water coolers. But that wasn’t good enough for Greenpeace Energy Policy analyst Samantha Rogers." (Dan Gainor, News Busters)

"March of the giant penguins: Prehistoric equatorial penguins reached 5 feet in height" - "Giant prehistoric penguins? In Peru? It sounds more like something out of Hollywood than science, but a researcher from North Carolina State University along with U.S., Peruvian and Argentine collaborators has shown that two heretofore undiscovered penguin species reached equatorial regions tens of millions of years earlier than expected and during a period when the earth was much warmer than it is now." (North Carolina State University)

"Treachery and greenery: Environmentalism has begun to splinter" - "AMONG the many targets of “The Life of Brian”, a satirical Monty Python film, is the tendency of radical left-wing political movements to splinter. The film’s would-be revolutionaries of the People’s Front of Judea, the Judean People’s Front and the Popular Front of Judea are too busy quibbling and accusing each other of treachery to cause much trouble for the occupying Romans.

The environmental movement—which, at least at first, shared many of its members with the far left—had until recently managed to avoid a similar fate. Over issues ranging from acid rain to deforestation, nuclear power to air pollution, the greens presented a unified front, arguing for better regulation of the various industries and human activities that damage the planet.

But that unity has started to crack." (The Economist)

Hysterical... absurd: "Greenland Ice May Melt Much Faster - UN Scientist" - "LONDON - New research shows that man-made climate change could cause the Greenland ice sheet to break up in hundreds, rather than thousands, of years, the chair of a United Nations panel of scientists said on Monday." (Reuters)

"EU president calls for action against climate change during visit to Greenland" - "COPENHAGEN, Denmark: European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso stressed the need for a new global pact to stem global warming after visiting a Greenland glacier that has become a symbol of climate change." (AP)

"Linkages between solar activity, climate predictability and water resource development" (.pdf) - "This study is based on the numerical analysis of the properties of routinely observed hydrometeorological data which in South Africa alone is collected at a rate of more than half a million station days per year, with some records approaching 100 continuous years in length. The analysis of this data demonstrates an unequivocal synchronous linkage between these processes in South Africa and elsewhere, and solar activity. This confirms observations and reports by others in many countries during the past 150 years. It is also shown with a high degree of assurance that there is a synchronous linkage between the statistically significant, 21-year periodicity in these processes and the acceleration and deceleration of the sun as it moves through galactic space. Despite a diligent search, no evidence could be found of trends in the data that could be attributed to human activities. It is essential that this information be accommodated in water resource development and operation procedures in the years ahead." (W J R Alexander, F Bailey, D B Bredenkamp, A van der Merwe and N Willemse, Journal of the South African Institution of Civil Engineering)

"Additional Evidence On The Bias In The IPCC WG1 Report On The Assessment Of Near-Surface Air Temperature Trends" - "As a further example of the selective use of papers by the IPCC WG1 Report, I summarize here the sequence of papers and comments on the role of land-use change on near-surface air temperature trends." (Climate Science)

It wasn't gorebull warming after all? "U. of Colorado study shows desert droughts lead to earlier annual mountain snow loss" - "A new study spearheaded by the University of Colorado at Boulder’s National Snow and Ice Data Center indicates wind-blown dust from drought-stricken and disturbed lands in the Southwest can shorten the duration of mountain snow cover hundreds of miles away in the Colorado mountains by roughly a month.

Led by Tom Painter, the study found seasonal snow coverage in the sub-alpine and alpine areas of the San Juan Mountains of southwestern Colorado disappeared by about 30 days earlier in 2006 because of heavy dust deposition from the Colorado Plateau roughly 200 miles away. The dust, which probably came from northeast Arizona and northwest New Mexico deserts, reduced the snow’s reflectivity, allowing more of the sun’s energy to warm the snow pack and cause it to melt earlier.

“The connection between dust and lower snow reflectance is already established, but the amount of impact measured and modeled in this system stunned us,” said Painter. “The fact that dust can reduce snow cover duration so much – a month earlier -- transforms our understanding of mountain sensitivity to external forcings.”

While just three or four significant dust deposition events occurred annually in the San Juan Mountains between 2003 and 2005, eight occurred in 2006, according to the authors. In 2006, the sub-alpine regions of the San Juans melted out 24 to 35 days earlier than previous, relatively dust-free years, according to ground measurements and computer simulations." (University of Colorado at Boulder)

No? Duh! "U.S. Convinced of Rising Global Temperatures" - " A vast majority of people in the United States think the world is warmer now than a century ago, according to a poll by Knowledge Networks and Stanford University. 85 per cent of respondents think global temperatures have probably increased over the past 100 years." (Angus Reid Global Monitor)

We think it's warmer than when it was colder... how do they do it?

"The melting ice man cometh" - "He believes his support for Kyoto lost him the coal states of Kentucky and West Virginia - and the 2000 race for the presidency. But Hurricane Katrina and his Oscar-winning documentary, An Inconvenient Truth, changed all that. Now, on the eve of his Live Earth global concerts, climate change could put Al Gore back in the White House." (The Observer)

"British Newspaper Exposes Al Gore’s Inconvenient Hypocrisy" - "Al Gore is at it again, blaming all the world’s environmental problems on others, in particular, George W. Bush, while revising history to suggest that he did more to solve anthropogenic global warming when he was Vice President, and would have done more if elected president in 2000.

Sadly, American media choose to give him a pass for his historical revisions, allowing him to say whatever he wants with total impunity.

After all, he’s a Democrat, and America’s press adore him.

Fortunately, the British press aren’t so beholden to the Global Warmingist-in-Chief, and don’t feel the need to bow at the altar he so arrogantly deigns to put himself on.

With that in mind, the British Independent published a piece about soon-to-be-Dr. Al Gore Monday which included two paragraphs you’ll never see in a mainstream paper here." (Noel Sheppard, News Busters) | Too little, too late: Gore blames scientists for climate crisis (London Independent)

<guffaw!> "Ten predictions about climate change that have come true" - "Here are the hard facts about global warming that everyone should know, compiled for Times Online by internationally acclaimed writer, scientist and explorer Tim Flannery, author of The Weather Makers: Our changing climate and what it means for life on earth." (Tim Flannery, The Times)

This one's actually pretty funny :) Of the myriad 'predictions' made about 'climate change' Tim's picked some pretty wild assertions to go with some loose generalizations that have little or nothing to do with enhanced greenhouse (the AGW hypothesis) and zip to do with catastrophic anthropogenic global warming. Actually Australians probably look pretty fondly on Tim because we have "Flannery Effect" (think Gore-effect cold events only wet) -- it's been raining ever since the fool started blathering about how 'gorebull warming' would dry out Australia and the driest period since the Federation Drought (beginning of the 20th Century) is now over ('on ya, Tim!).

"Don't like the heat? Try suing" - "Think this global-warming controversy will blow over soon? The lawyers don't.

Top Dallas firm Thompson & Knight started a dedicated climate-change practice June 4 with 26 lawyers. Today, Dallas' Vinson & Elkins will unveil its 41-lawyer group, headed by a former senior counsel for the World Bank.

The law firms – and a dozen others nationwide – are getting ready for a predicted explosion of climate-related work tied to government regulation, lawsuits against energy companies and new markets that will trade the rights to emit carbon." (Dallas Morning News)

Once again misanthropic enviros are managing to get lawyers (and their greed) to do the heavy lifting suppressing all forms of human endeavor. Attacking the energy supply will likely be the most effective misanthropy ever practiced in human history.

"Climate Change, Witch Hunts, Beer and Wine" - "Some university skeptics and state climatologists are feeling like they are being victims of ‘witch hunts’, attempts to purge the institutions or states of skeptics that may impede funding efforts or desired actions to deal with preceived global warming. Literal ‘witch hunts’ in the little ice ages it appears occurred. It appears the cold also may have led to the eastern European preference for beer over wine.

A paper, Climatic Variability in Sixteenth-Century Europe and its Social Dimension: A Synthesis by Pfister and Brázdil in Climatic Change, Volume 43, Number 1, September 1999 had reconstructed some of the changes and extremes in the little ice age. Here is a section of the abstract.

The deterioration of summer climate in the late sixteenth century initiated a second period of enlarged glaciers in this millennium (the first having been in the fourteenth century) which did not end until the late nineteenth century.

The analysis of the effects of climate on rye prices in four German towns involved a model that included monthly temperatures and precipitation values known to affect grain production. The correlation with rye prices was found significant for the entire century and reached its highest values between 1565 and 1600. From the 1580s to the turn of the century wine production slumped almost simultaneously in four regions over a distance of 800 kilometers (Lake Zurich to western Hungary). This had far-reaching consequences for the Habsburg treasury and promoted a temporary shift in drinking habits from wine to beer. Peasant communities which were suffering large collective damage from the effects of climatic change pressed authorities for the organization of witch-hunts. Seemingly most witches were burnt as scapegoats of climatic change." (Icecap)

Oh boy... "Armies Must Ready for Global Warming Role - Britain" - "LONDON - Global warming is such a threat to security that military planners must build it into their calculations, the head of Britain's armed forces said on Monday." (Reuters)

... greenhouse, schmeenhouse -- time for another look at greenhouse, global warming and some facts here.

"Hardworking Japan debates Daylight Saving Time" - "TOKYO, June 26 - The land of the rising sun is considering Daylight Saving Time to conserve energy, curb greenhouse gas emissions and help fight global warming, but critics say the move might merely promote "daylight slaving".

Japan's government estimates that putting the clocks forward an hour in April and back again in late October could reduce nationwide carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by roughly 1.4 million tonnes a year.

But that's only about 0.1 percent of the 1.29 billion tonnes of CO2 that Japan belched out in 2005, according to the latest government data.

Instead, critics say the proposal, contained in a government outline of economic policies unveiled this month, is a thinly veiled attempt to squeeze more working hours out of employees." (Reuters Life!)

"Rapid deforestation poses warming threat" - "TARAPOTO, Peru -- Brown, denuded hillsides dot the landscape, cleared by poor farmers to grow coca or food crops where dense jungle once stood in subtropical north-central Peru.

Boulders stand bare. Topsoil, having lost its protection, washes away under the assault of heavy rain.

Deforestation in Latin America and the Caribbean is accelerating, a new report shows, and the implications are growing more ominous every year.

Scientists say deforestation, almost always to facilitate planting crops and raising cattle, accounts for about 20 percent of the carbon emissions that contribute to global warming. Environmentalists are pushing to allow countries and companies to offset their emissions by paying to preserve forests elsewhere, such as in Latin America and the Caribbean. The Group of Eight nations, meeting in Germany earlier this month, pledged to help poor countries reduce deforestation to provide ``a significant and cost-effective contribution toward mitigating greenhouse gas emissions.'' (Miami Herald)

Usual misdirection: "Environmental Group: Windfall Profits to Global Warmers" - "Should big polluters own the sky?

That's one of the key questions as we consider how to limit and reduce global warming pollution. A U.S. Senate committee is set to examine this and related issues on June 28. Many of the biggest coal-burning power companies claim they own the sky -and should be paid billions of dollars to reduce their emissions.

A new Clean Air Watch white paper concludes that the 10 most polluting electric power companies collectively could pocket $9 billion annually under the wrong kind of cap-and-trade program.

One company alone -- Ohio-based American Electric Power -- could rake in more than a billion and a half dollars every year. AEP has been among the polluters that have argued in favor of handing out global warming emission credits free to companies based on past pollution levels." (Southwest Nebraska News)

In fact they are talking about carbon dioxide, not an atmospheric pollutant but rather an essential trace gas. Having wrongly framed the discussion they then set out to frame energy producers (in fact we as consumers cause said emissions as hydrocarbon fuels are oxidized on our behalf). Granted hot air certificates are an outright trading scam but it's a scam being driven by enviros of the gorebull warming kind with energy companies finally yielding to temptation and maneuvering to maximize harvest of green-extorted consumer bucks.

D'oh! "Tough task of getting polluters to come clean" - "With all the concerns about global warming, Martin Brau, chief financial officer of Wow Energy, thought the company’s technology to reduce greenhouse gas emissions would be an easy sell. But convincing utility companies to adopt his WowClean technology, which removes emissions at the point of energy production, has been an uphill battle. In the six months since Wow began marketing the technology, Mr Brau has found utility groups have little interest in spending money to reduce emissions unless forced by legislation, preferring instead to “chip away” at emissions as new requirements gradually come into effect." (Financial Times)

"Firms see red on green group" - "Business leaders this weekend lambasted the government's high-profile green body, the Carbon Trust, for failing small companies. The Carbon Trust has a £100m budget to help businesses save energy, embrace new technologies and help to combat climate change. But David Frost, director-general of the British Chambers of Commerce, said a survey of his members had revealed widespread disillusionment." (The Observer)

"Canadian Premiers Urged on Emissions" - "A coalition of environmental groups says Eastern Canadian provinces are lagging behind the New England states in controlling greenhouse gas emissions. Canadian and U.S. environmentalists were in Prince Edward Island on Monday to pressure Eastern Canadian premiers and New England governors to take concrete action to stop climate change." (Associated Press)

"Australia, EU agree to climate talks" - "Australia and the European Union have agreed to hold regular talks on climate change, an issue on which they are often poles apart. Foreign Minister Alexander Downer said a forum on energy security and climate change between Australia and the European Commission would be set up. The forum would meet once or twice a year on developing cooperation in those areas, he said." (AAP)

"APEC could host climate change talks: PM" - "SYDNEY'S APEC summit is an appropriate place for Asian countries to discuss climate change and international carbon trading, said Prime Minister John Howard. "It doesn't necessarily have to be within the UN framework," Mr Howard told the The Australian Financial Review. "My preference would be to get an outcome that produces a move forward," he said. "If that happens consistent with the UN framework, well that's fine, but if it doesn't, that's not going to trouble me." (AAP)

"ExxonMobil highlights commitment to addressing climate risks" - "US oil company ExxonMobil has pledged to increase energy efficiency in the short term, advance current emission-reducing technologies in the medium term, and develop breakthrough technologies in the long term, as part of its bid to tackle climate change." (Energy Business Review)

The world certainly has energy challenges ahead but gorebull warming isn't part of it.

"Greenhouse gas burial" - "Deep coal seams that are not commercially viable for coal production could be used for permanent underground storage of carbon dioxide (CO2) generated by human activities, thus avoiding atmospheric release, according to two studies published in Inderscience's International Journal of Environment and Pollution. An added benefit of storing CO2 in this way is that additional useful methane will be displaced from the coal beds." (Inderscience Publishers)

"Get Americans to drive less by raising gas taxes" - "Charlottesville, VA. - As an environmentalist, I was among the first to get a hybrid car, which helped me be among the first to admit that government-imposed fuel standards – known as Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) – don't work." (Randy Salzman, The Christian Science Monitor)

"Biofuels Could Be Answer to Climate Crisis" - "Just for a moment, let's assume that you believe there is merit to the global warming brouhaha. Let's say you've been convinced by the scientific data from reputable publications like Nature and Science and the National Geographic. If you've bought in, then you may well be asking what you can do." (ABC News)

"We need agrofuel, not biofuel, right?" - "Amid the heated controversy over global warming and fossil fuel shortages, developed countries and major companies have raised the issue of biofuel. But can alternative energy from agricultural commodities (palm oil, soy beans, corn, jatropha, etc.) become a panacea, a substitute for fossil fuels?

Biofuel could instead turn out to be a catastrophe. A large number of social movements, ranging from peasants to animal rights activists, are rejecting the deceptive term "biofuel". The word biofuel seems to trick us into believing that this vegetable-based energy is more environmentally friendly. It also implies that biofuel is renewable energy though the reality is the opposite." (Jakarta Post)

"Aviation growth and global warming" - "Airline fuel efficiency measures, brought in to mitigate the rising cost of aviation fuel, have resulted in annual cut-backs of aircraft carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions of nearly 25 million tonnes, year on year. This represents annual savings of just over 4.0% of the total tonnage of CO2 aviation-related emissions. Potential annual cuts of a further 2% in the near term will also be possible if a range of new fuel saving intiatives – such as extending the use of winglets and ground-power units at airports – continue to be adopted throughout the industry.

These are some of the findings of a new study Aviation growth and global warming produced by independent Anglo-German aerospace information company PMI-Media Ltd." (Luchtzak Aviation)

"Solar energy continues to gain steam" - "Solar technologies are getting their day in the sun in Ontario, and the companies behind them are basking in the rays.

It's been a long time coming. Until recently, the wind industry has received most of the support in this country as the premier renewable-energy option, coming in the form of policies, incentives or private investment.

Solar has been the poor cousin, always there and supportive of wind, always mentioned alongside other renewables, always the sexy headline-grabber, but lacking any lobby power and rarely taken seriously in political circles as an alternative energy worth backing with funds." (Toronto Star)

"Floating Wind Turbine May be in N.Sea by 2009 - Hydro" - "OSLO - The world's first floating wind turbine could be generating electricity in the North Sea in 2009 under a research pact on Monday between Norwegian energy group Norsk Hydro and German engineering firm Siemens." (Reuters)

"Report: Expanding nuclear power in California many years away" - "SACRAMENTO – The failure of the federal government to open a storage site for radioactive waste means any chance to expand nuclear power in California is more than a decade away, according to a draft report prepared for the state Energy Commission." (AP)

"Nuclear Power Depends on Waste Disposal" - "The failure of the federal government to open a storage site for radioactive waste means any chance to expand nuclear power in California is more than a decade away, according to a draft report prepared for the state Energy Commission." (Associated Press)

"China aims for bigger share of South Asia's water lifeline" - "NEW DELHI — Sharpening Asian competition over energy resources, driven in part by high growth rates in gross domestic product and in part by mercantilist attempts to lock up supplies, has obscured another danger: Water shortages in much of Asia are beginning to threaten rapid economic modernization, prompting the building of upstream projects on international rivers. If water geopolitics were to spur interstate tensions through reduced water flows to neighboring states, the Asian renaissance could stall.

Water has emerged as a key issue that could determine whether Asia is headed toward mutually beneficial cooperation or deleterious interstate competition. No country could influence that direction more than China, which controls the Tibetan plateau — the source of most major rivers of Asia." (Japan Times)

What? Bad headline... "Nanotechnology: consumers must be convinced risks outweigh benefits" - "Washington -- “There is no doubt that nanotechnology has the potential to make the world a better place,” said Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies Chief Scientist Andrew Maynard. “But if consumers and other stakeholders are not convinced that the benefits outweigh the risks, many applications will not see the light of day. Likewise, if the benefits are unclear and the risks uncertain, the products of nanotechnology will be a hard sell.” (Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies)

... looks like that should read: 'benefits outweigh risks' -- no wonder scientists 'can't get their message out' -- they English can't good speak!

"Penn researchers report that gene therapy awakens the brain despite blindness from birth" - "Philadelphia –- Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania have demonstrated that gene therapy used to restore retinal activity to the blind also restores function to the brain’s visual center, a critical component of seeing. The multi-institutional study led by Geoffrey K. Aguirre, assistant professor of neurology in Penn's School of Medicine, shows that gene therapy can improve retinal, visual-pathway and visual-cortex responses in animals born blind and has the potential to do the same in humans." (University of Pennsylvania)

"GM Tomato Tastes Better: Taste testers prefer tomatoes that carry a flavor-enhancing gene" - "Shoppers who miss the taste of farm-grown tomatoes may find solace in a new technology that puts back what generations of breeding for hardiness and shelf life have taken out. A new variety of tomato has been genetically modified (GM) to produce geraniol, a rose-smelling compound found in fruits and flowers. In a blind taste test, 60 percent of 37 testers preferred the flavor of the GM tomato, according to a study published online this week in Nature Biotechnology.

The result proves that genetic modification can potentially restore some of the flavor and aroma lost as breeders have created more durable strains of tomatoes and other crops, says biotechnologist Efraim Lewinsohn of the Newe Ya'ar Research Center in Ramat Yishay, Israel, who led the research. "You often sit down in living rooms and people complain tomatoes don't taste like they used to," he says." (Scientific American)

"EU Experts Clash on Approving Latest GMO Maize Type" - "BRUSSELS - EU food safety experts failed on Monday to agree on allowing imports of a genetically modified (GMO) maize type, sending the application to agriculture ministers for further debate, the European Commission said." (Reuters)

"Europe GMO Area to Surge Over 10 Years - Monsanto" - "PARIS - Europe will increase its genetically modified crop area by 50,000-100,000 hectares a year over the next decade, from 100,000 ha in 2007, US biotech giant Monsanto said on Monday." (Reuters)

June 25, 2007

"Autism in the Vaccine Court" - "A federal vaccine court in Washington is confronting the contentious and highly emotional issue of whether early childhood vaccinations might have caused autism in thousands of children. Virtually every major scientific study and organization that has weighed in on the issue has seen no link. But many parents of afflicted children remain unconvinced. Their lawyers will try to prove that some 4,800 children were harmed by the mass vaccination campaigns that protect the nation’s youngsters from potentially devastating childhood illnesses." (New York Times)

"Activists Play Chicken With Arsenic" - "A recent Milwaukee Journal Sentinel column reminded us just how far some organic food alarmists and small-farm-only advocates will go to push their agenda. Take the Minnesota-based Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP): If they're to be believed, we now have yet another reason to fear what's on our dinner plates. The IATP, which also wants to legislate our eating habits by forcing their organic foods agenda into the 2007 Farm Bill, has been consistently raising false alarms about arsenic levels in chicken." (ConsumerFreedom.com)

"Knowledge is power" - "“Our air, food and water are poisoned; our food is unnatural and unfit to eat; our bodies are obese and ridden with disease and cancers; our healthcare is the worst in the world; and we’re all doomed to an early grave.” If we listen to media, mad scientists and evil corporations are conspiring to kill us. Fear is oozing from everything!" (Junkfood Science)

"How’d we get here from there?" - "Is common sense dead? How is it that so many of our public health policies and popular beliefs about our health and food can be so flawed — practically the opposite of the most careful evidence and even the facts that are looking us right in the eye? How have we become so misguided and come to believe in unsupportable ideas?" (Junkfood Science)

"Too fat to love a child?" - "This heartbreaking story in the Sunday Herald Sun is another example of government agencies not knowing what’s best, or acting in the best interests of people ... especially if they’re fat. There is no credible science to support a government official’s decision to base adoption eligibility on BMI." (Junkfood Science)

"Just for fun: The latest cure for obesity" - "Thanks to Harriett Brown for pointing us to this entertaining spoof:" (Junkfood Science)

"How bureaucrats think" - "Dr. Westby G. Fisher, M.D., FACC, a board certified internist, cardiologist, and cardiac electrophysiologist at Evanston Northwestern Healthcare, Evanston, IL wrote a great article today questioning another expensive healthcare initiative. He asks if all of that time, energy and effort could have been better used to improve health care facilities, providing programs for the poor and taking care of patients?" (Junkfood Science)

"Canada Beetle Outbreak Spurs Overreaction - Report" - "VANCOUVER, British Columbia - The effort to curb Western Canada's pine beetle infestation and salvage dead trees is creating its own problems, according to a study released Thursday by environmental and labor groups. The infestation has sparked "the forest industry equivalent of a gold rush" as producers scramble to salvage millions of dead trees before they degrade and become unusable, according to the study." (Reuters)

Note their preferred option is catastrophic wildfire (how many trees and how much wildlife would that 'save'?) and/or lethal cold snaps. Very critter-friendly, we're sure.

"Without Heat, Much of N. America Would be Underwater" - "A University of Utah study shows how various regions of North America are kept afloat by heat within Earth’s rocky crust, and how much of the continent would sink beneath sea level if not for heat that makes rock buoyant. New York City would sit 1,427 feet underwaterc and Los Angeles would rest 3,756 feet beneath the Pacific." (Newswise)

"Epistle to the Theologians" - "Well, it was not exactly unexpected. As stated above, one of the most reliable ways to get into trouble in this business is to write about religion. If you beaver away long enough at consigning thoughts to electrons, you run the risk of hitting upon saying what a lot of people have been thinking (and, it follows, what a lot of people are avoiding thinking). The result is a cascade of e-mails." (Number Watch)

"Oregon Global Warming Skeptic Finds Controversy" - "Oregon state climatologist George Taylor does not believe that global warming is due to human activity. Now, Oregon Gov. Ted Kulongoski wants him to stop using the state climatologist title. NewsHour correspondent Lee Hochberg reports from Oregon and Washington on the controversy." (PBS) | More On The Suppression Of Climate Change Views (Climate Science)

Check the tag line: LEE HOCHBERG: But with mounting scientific data portending a problem, it's clear that people and their leaders have begun to care.

Actually not Lee, the more it's investigated the less we find to worry about.

"Rebels With A Klaus" - "Led by the president of the Czech Republic, respected scientists are risking their reputations to expose global warming as a non-threat exploited by those who not only want to extinguish debate, but freedom as well." (IBD)

The Huffington Post and DailyKos endorse Václav Klaus (The Reference Frame)

"A bad explanation is better than none at all" - "This week Sydney had the perfect storm: the one that didn't happen. The Bureau of Meteorology said we should have been struck by a gale of 100kmh winds about 5am Wednesday. It didn't happen. The experts were wrong.

And as it does happen, this didn't surprise me. Early Wednesday morning I was reading a fascinating new book claiming that expert predictions in many fields are no more accurate than flipping a coin, and often less accurate than predictions by non-experts. The author, Nassim Nicholas Taleb, says our lives are surrounded by a miasma of false predictions and forecasts. As a result, much of the medium- or long-term planning done by individuals, companies and governments is of dubious value." (Sydney Morning Herald)

Twaddle: "Dire warnings for Pacific over global warming" - "A US government specialist on environmental health has told a conference in Honolulu of the hazards faced by the Pacific because of global warming. Dr. Mark Keim, of the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention, says rising seas and coastal flooding will affect millions worldwide, starting in the Pacific. He said American Samoa, Micronesia, Fiji and Tuvalu "will be the most affected early on." (Radio New Zealand)

"Swedish Scientist Accuses UN's IPCC of Falsifying Data and Destroying Evidence" - "If you listen to the global warming alarmists working for the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, or folks like soon-to-be-Dr. Al Gore, sea levels across the globe are rising at a rate that will eventually doom us all. According to Swedish paleogeophysicist Nils-Axel Mörner, who’s been studying and writing about sea levels for four decades, the scientists working for the IPCC have falsified data and destroyed evidence to incorrectly prove their point." (Noel Sheppard, News Busters)

"Claim That Sea Level Is Rising Is a Total Fraud: Interview with Dr. Nils-Axel Mörner." - "Dr. Nils-Axel Mörner is the head of the Paleogeophysics and Geodynamics department at Stockholm University in Sweden. He is past president (1999-2003) of the INQUA Commission on Sea Level Changes and Coastal Evolution, and leader of the Maldives Sea Level Project. Dr. Mörner has been studying the sea level and its effects on coastal areas for some 35 years. He was interviewed by Gregory Murphy on June 6 for EIR." (EIR Economics)

"Important New Paper On The Urban Effect On Temperature And Other Climate Metrics" - "There is an important new paper that has appeared which adds significantly to the understanding of the role of urban areas within the climate system." (Climate Science)

"Fiddler On The Roof" - "The problem with warming predictions may lie in how we measure the present. Can we say that 2006 was the warmest year ever when the temperature is being measured mere feet from air conditioning exhaust?" (IBD)

"How not to measure temperature, part 12" - "One of the really odd discoveries that I've made while surveying climate monitoring stations around the USA is the fact that many of the official stations are located at sewage treatment plants. For example, the one in Colusa, CA is at their sewage treatment plant. I've visited it.

A couple of volunteers for www.surfacestations.org have been going around Washington and Oregon locating stations there and have also reported a number of stations at waste-water treatment facilities. I'll get to why locating a temperature monitoring station at these facilities is a really bad idea later, but first I want to tell you why many of them are located at these places." (Watt's Up With That?)

"Solar energy green, clean" - "Our sun is a powerhouse, showering the earth every hour with more energy than the entire planet consumes in a year, according to the Solar Energy Society of Canada." (Toronto Star)

Hmm... the Earth takes approximately 8,766 hours to orbit the sun each year and consumes roughly one hour's worth of solar radiation, leaving, um... 8,765 over 8,766 times 100 equals, uh... about 99.99% solar/human Earth-warming actually due to solar irradiance, right?

"The global warming scam" - "You know how we’re told sixty times per minute that man-made global warming is no longer just a theory but it’s now demonstrable fact, and that anyone who contradicts this is clinically insane because there’s a consensus of all scientists that it’s happening and only about 2.5 scientists on the entire planet disagree and they’re in the pay of Big Oil anyway so we can forget about them; and so the debate is TOTALLY OVER, says the BBC, which has been told that it is authoritatively by Very Important Scientists, so that the ‘impartial’ and ‘objective’ BBC says that it no longer needs to give us a balanced argument about climate change because there just isn’t any reputable scientific opposition to the proven facts about seas rising and ice melting and hurricanes happening, all because of the human race and its foul and filthy habits of combustibles, cars and capitalism?" (Melanie Phillips's Diary)

"Error In The Economist On Their Coverage Of Climate Issues" - "The Economist is an excellent publication. However, as I have communicated before on Climate Science, it is occasionally inaccurate in its coverage. This occurs very clearly in the June 23rd-27th issue in an otherwise very good article." (Climate Science)

"GERMANY: Warming Climate Helps Some Species, Kills Others" - "BERLIN - The weather conditions in the heart of Europe were abnormal last year -- the summer too hot, too dry, and too long, and the winter too warm. But they were excellent for some foreign species, which, benefiting from the changed weather, settled in Germany, and have become a headache -- or worse -- for farmers and just about everybody else." (IPS)

"US Climate Law May Linger Until Next President" - "WASHINGTON/NEW YORK - Global warming is the focus of at least seven bills on Capitol Hill, but whether any of them will become law before President George W. Bush leaves office in 2009 is a matter of keen debate. At this point, there are no front runners -- just bills with some chance of prevailing in some form and those that are dead on arrival, industry and environmental analysts said." (Reuters)

"Bush's Green Turn Blunts the European Critique: Frederick Kempe" - " Don't expect most Europeans or U.S. environmentalists to celebrate George W. Bush's belated conversion to the realities of climate change.

Yet, hard as it is for them to swallow, they owe Bush big- time for advancing their cause.

What he has done in past weeks, culminating with the Group of Eight summit earlier this month in Germany, is move the world past the failed Kyoto Protocol and bring the fastest- growing polluters (including China and India) into climate negotiations. In the process, he has laid the groundwork for a dramatic improvement in U.S.-European relations." (Bloomberg)

"Rich nations accused of 'green imperialism' on climate change" - "SINGAPORE: Asian business and government leaders accused rich countries of hypocrisy, saying they run polluting industries with cheap labor in China and then blame the country for worsening global warming and climate change. "This is green imperialism," Nor Mohamed Yakcop, Malaysia's deputy finance minister, told a panel discussion at the World Economic Forum on East Asia, a two-day conference in Singapore." (Associated Press)

Well, it's really more 'green nonsense' but close enough.

"Gore pleads his cause to world's advertisers" - "FORMER US Vice-President and climate change campaigner Al Gore has pleaded with the global advertising industry to get directly involved in the climate change debate and create campaigns with their clients to raise awareness of the issue." (The Australian)

1 down, 8 to go? "Live Earth Istanbul show scrapped" - "The Istanbul edition of the July 7 global Live Earth concerts has been cancelled. Organisers are now seeking a site to erect giant screens in the Turkish city to take TV feeds from the remaining eight shows around the world. Reports in the Turkish press point to the non-appearance of promised government support and a failure to attract sponsorship from big business as the reasons for the concert being cancelled." (Australian Broadcasting Corp.)

"California Air Board Adopts Greenhouse Gas Rules" - "SAN FRANCISCO - The California Air Resources Board approved three new rules Thursday to reduce greenhouse gas emissions as part of the state's effort to fight global warming." (Reuters)

Ah yes, gorebal warmening-caused summer drought... "Flaming June? You must be joking" - 'June is the month when we hope for sunshine but what we get is torrential rain. The covers go on at Wimbledon. The wellington boots go on at Glastonbury, and lonely cricket supporters sit with flasks of tea amid acres of empty seats. Global warming notwithstanding, this year is proving no different." (London Independent)

Gosh darn gorebal warmening! "Argentine industry with no energy for fourth day running" - "Argentina’s main natural gas and electricity distributors interrupted this Monday for the fourth day running their provision to industry and big consumers to ensure supply to homes following a consumption peak attributed to the polar weather spell covering most of central and south Argentina." (Mercopress) | Andes tunnel cleared of snow and stranded trucks begin moving (Mercopress)

"Global warming skeptics score a few points" - "In the rising hysteria over the global warming issue, a kind of race against time appears to be developing. The question is: What will happen first? Will the "global warmists" be able to stop the oilsands projects, wrecking the economy of Alberta and much of Canada in the process? Or will the growing chorus of skeptics about global warming be able to command enough attention to put the brakes on the warmists before they do the wrecking job?" (Calgary Sun)

"State's share of a coal plant is assailed: Critics say Nevada facility contradicts goal to cut share of greenhouse gases." - "Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger once proudly proclaimed that California has stopped buying coal-generated power due to its harmful side effects on the environment. He urged the rest of the nation to follow his lead. But the state not only buys power from a Nevada coal-fired power plant, it owns a piece of it." (Sacramento Bee)

"Norway Says Will Slash CO2 Emissions at Home" - "OSLO - Oil-rich Norway said on Friday that cuts in carbon dioxide emissions at home would probably account for between half and two-thirds of its planned reductions as it seeks zero net emissions of CO2 by 2050." (Reuters)

"Credit Suisse Buys Stake in Carbon Firm" - "LONDON - Credit Suisse has taken a 10 percent stake in carbon project developer EcoSecurities Group for 44 million euros (US$59 million), EcoSecurities said on Friday." (Reuters)

"More US commuters drive solo" - "Global-warming warnings have not dissuaded Americans from driving to work alone. In fact, their numbers have been rising." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"False advertising on energy" - "Like the idea of paying more for less? If a certain piece of legislation just passed by the Senate becomes law, we might have no choice." (Ben Lieberman, Washington Times)

"Renewable energy not 'silver bullet': Shell chief" - "Renewable energy will not provide the "silver bullet" that will fulfill the world's energy needs, and greater focus must be placed on energy efficiency, Shell's chief executive wrote in a comment piece published Monday." (AFP)

"Biofuelled: Grain prices go the way of the oil price" - "EVERY morning millions of Americans confront the latest trend in commodities markets at their kitchen table. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, rising prices for crops—dubbed “agflation”—has begun to drive up the cost of breakfast. The price of orange juice has risen by a quarter over the past year, eggs by a fifth and milk by roughly 5%. Breakfast-cereal makers, such as Kellogg's and General Mills, have also raised their prices. Underpinning these rises is a sharp increase in the prices of grains such as corn (maize) and wheat, both of which recently hit ten-year highs. Analysts are beginning to ask, as they have of oil and metals, whether higher prices are here to stay." (The Economist)

"China Bars Corn Ethanol Due to High Food Costs" - "China has just banned further expansion of its corn ethanol industry, after a radical 43-percent increase in pork prices over the past year. Xu Dingming of the Chinese National Energy Leading Group told a recent seminar that “Food-based ethanol fuel will not be the direction for China.” The Chinese turnabout comes as President Bush is cheerleading a massive corn ethanol expansion, supposedly to help the U.S. achieve “energy independence.” (Dennis T. Avery, Hudson Institute)

"Genetically modified mushrooms may yield human drugs" - "Mushrooms, the smallest rooms in the world, have already proved to be healthy foods. Scientists have now genetically modified mushrooms such that they might serve as bio-factories for the production of various beneficial human drugs, according to new research released Friday June 22, 2007." (Food Consumer)

"Want to be sure it's GM-free? Buy food in Moscow" - "MOSCOW - Moscow next week introduces a city-wide label to identify GM-free foods, a move ecologists hail as ground-breaking but which foreign producers say is complex and costly." (Reuters)

"Is it a rosato? A lemato? GM tom has floral, fruity smell" - "Israeli researchers say they have genetically engineered tomatoes to give hints of lemon and rose aromas that have done well in testing on volunteers." (AFP)

June 22, 2007

"Climate Activists' Credibility Gap" - "Organic yogurt king and Stonyfield Farm CEO Gary Hirshberg may have thought that he avoided the buzzsaw this week by ducking a TV appearance with me. Guess I'll just have to go on without him." (Steven Milloy, FoxNews.com)

This weekend's POINT TO PONDER: Alright, activists of various flavors have managed to get people's shorts in a knot over enhanced greenhouse (the concept of increased atmospheric greenhouse gas availability cranking up the misnamed 'greenhouse effect' and causing catastrophic surface heating). One major problem with this hypothesis that always seems to get lost or glossed over is that there has been three times more greenhouse gas in the atmosphere than required to deliver the current greenhouse effect since at least the end of the last great glaciation. There has never been a need for anthropogenic greenhouse enhancement to increase potential greenhouse warming because the atmosphere is already opaque in the relevant absorption bands in most regions (that is, there's 'competition' between overabundant GHG molecules for available outbound infrared radiation with only limited, regional potential remaining). This is why catastrophic warming scenarios generated by woeful 'climate models' are so laughable because models are programmed only with 'positive feedbacks' (even greater warming from trivial increase in absorber availability) while real world potential actually works with negative feedback (you get progressively less bang for your buck by adding more GHGs because there's insufficient suitable infrared radiation to go around). So, why the hysteria over something that physically cannot happen?

APPALLING: National Review can't stand the heat; Advises conservatives to melt on climate: Hold the Line on Global Warming - "What should conservatives do about global warming? Jim Manzi suggests in his June 25 National Review cover story (“Game Plan”) that conservatives embrace junk science and “manage” global climate change so that they can “peel off” 1 percent of the votes from the “opposing coalition” in some future presidential election." (Steven Milloy, JunkScience.com)

Big Oil & Global Warming (EcoWorld)

"The UN's bloody failure" - "Ban Ki-moon's self-serving and preposterous explanations obscure the real reasons for the crisis in Darfur." (Eric Reeves, The Guardian)

"Global warming: truth or propaganda?" - "Vaclav Klaus, president of the Czech Republic, argues in the Financial Times that ambitious environmentalism is the biggest threat to freedom, democracy, the market economy and prosperity.

Mr Klaus writes that “global warming hysteria has become a prime example of the truth versus propaganda problem” and the issue “is more about social than natural sciences and more about man and his freedom than about tenths of a degree Celsius changes in average global temperature.”

Following an overwhelming response from readers, Mr Klaus has answered a selection of questions from the hundreds that were submitted." (Financial Times)

Synopsis from The Reference Frame.

"Terrorism Fears Surpass Global Warming in U.S." - " Many adults in the United States believe political violence is more menacing than climate change, according to a poll by Opinion Dynamics released by Fox News. 52 per cent of respondents think global terrorism poses a more serious threat to the world than global warming." (Angus Reid Global Monitor)

"New Paper On Exceptional European Heat - Another Example of Cherrypicking" - "There is a new paper that has just appeared that discusses the recent warm period in Europe in 2006 and 2007. It provides an excellent summary of an extreme weather event (and thanks to Juerg Luterbacher for sending to me!)

However, part of this paper is yet another example of following the IPCC policy, discussed yesterday, of ignoring inconvenient other peer reviewed research." (Climate Science)

"The shield of Ra: Could solar reflection save the planet?" - "Another day, another apocalyptic global warming prediction." (Paul Sussman, CNN)

"A Stern rebuke: climate fears all about politics" - "THERE'S no doubt that human activity creates air, water and soil pollution, a problem which we in Australia and elsewhere in the world have solved by the steady transfer of pollution-generating manufacturing to China, Japan and to the other countries of east Asia.

There is considerable doubt, however, that human activity is changing the climate. The science just doesn't stack up." (David Barnett, Canberra Times)

"Scientists close in on missing carbon sink" - "Forests in the United States and other northern mid- and upper-latitude regions are playing a smaller role in offsetting global warming than previously thought, according to a study appearing in Science this week." (NCAR)

"Northern forests less effective than tropical forests in reducing global warming" - "Forests in the United States and other northern mid- and upper-latitude regions are playing a smaller role in offsetting global warming than previously thought, according to a study appearing in this week's issue of Science." (NSF)

Actually there's considerable dispute over whether northern forests do anything other than warm the globe.

"US has to join the world effort on climate" - "In an exclusive interview, Al Gore has said China's emergence as the largest polluter will intensify the pressure it feels from the rest of the world to cut its emissions." (London Telegraph)

There's big bucks in frightening the citizens with scares and scams, apparently.

"China Says Exports Fuel Greenhouse Gas Emissions" - "BEIJING - China said on Thursday it was unfair for rich countries to buy its cheap goods and then condemn its greenhouse gas pollution, a day after one study suggested the nation was already the world's biggest carbon dioxide emitter." (Reuters)

"World Needs Rules for Burying Greenhouse Gases - IEA" - "OSLO - The world needs legal guidelines for burying greenhouse gases to help the still tiny business become one of the main ways of fighting global warming by 2050, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said on Thursday." (Reuters)

"Potential danger in plankton plan" - "Seeding the oceans with iron-rich dust to promote blooms of CO2-eating plankton has great potential environmental benefits, but the I-dare-you-to-stop-us stance of Planktos Inc., which plans to stimulate a bloom near the precious Galapagos Islands off South America must be stopped until more is known about the potential benefits and dangers." (Toronto Star)

This is the kind of thing they are worried about: Cause of Penguin Deaths Proven - The spate of deaths which occurred around the Falkland Islands during December 2002 to February 2003 has now been proven to be the result of algal poisoning." (Falklands Conservation) -- h/t Dennis A.

"Bush Says US Could Build 30 New Nuclear Plants" - "ATHENS, Alabama - President Bush Thursday said US utilities could build up to 30 new nuclear power plants and start construction by 2010 in order to keep up with growing electricity demand without spurring more global warming." (Reuters)

"UK May Have to Do Without Nuclear Power - Darling" - "LONDON - The British government will not subsidise new nuclear power plants, so if the private sector does not provide the huge investments needed, the country will have to do without, the minister responsible for energy said on Thursday." (Reuters)

"Taxmen Gougeth" - "Weak-kneed Republican senators have joined Democrats to impose $29 billion in new taxes on oil companies because prices at the pump are so high. Guess what: The new taxes will only make them higher." (IBD)

"UK Sets 2010 Date for Biofuel Carbon Incentives" - "LONDON - Britain said on Thursday that incentives for biofuels based on the amount of carbon they saved would be introduced from April 2010, a date seen as unrealistic by some industry players." (Reuters)

"NZ going backwards in energy savings, says report" - "New Zealand is heading backwards in its goals of becoming carbon neutral or meeting the Kyoto Protocol, says a study. In its Energy and the Economy 1997-2005, Statistics New Zealand showed energy use per person increased 13 per cent over the period. Use of non-renewable energy increased to 82 per cent by 2005 from 79.8 per cent at the start of the study. Energy imports increased by 48 per cent over the eight years." (NZPA)

"Critics Question EPA's Tighter Ozone Limits" - "WASHINGTON - The US Environmental Protection Agency offered tighter standards for ozone pollution for the first time since 1997 but critics said on Thursday the proposal is more lax than what the EPA's own experts recommended." (Reuters)

Another Buncombe report: "Global warming: Just what overcrowded, polluted India didn't need... the $3,000 car" - "India's economy is booming but its roads are a throwback to pre-industrial times. That is about to change when a flood of cheap vehicles come on the market." (London Independent)

"Senate OKs major boost in fuel-economy standards: But mandate for first significant increase in 3 decades faces rough road in House" - " Washington -- The Senate voted Thursday night for the first major increase in fuel-economy standards on cars, pickup trucks and sport utility vehicles in a generation as part of an energy bill that seeks to dramatically reduce the nation's addiction to gasoline." (SF Chronicle)

"EPA to Rule on CA Waiver This Year" - "The Environmental Protection Agency said Thursday it will rule by the end of the year on California's long-standing petition to implement greenhouse gas reductions on automobiles.

The law can't take effect unless California gets a federal waiver. While the federal government has authority to make air pollution rules, California has unique status under the Clean Air Act to enact its own regulations as long as it receives permission from the EPA. Other states can then follow either the federal or California standards.

At least 11 other states — Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington — are ready to implement California's emissions standards if it gets the waiver." (Associated Press)

D'oh! "CEOs Say Consumers Only Go So Far to 'Go Green'" - "NEW YORK - US companies are working hard to make everything from clothing to laundry detergent more environmentally friendly, corporate executives said this week at the Reuters Consumer and Retail Summit.

But even though consumers are enamored with the idea of having cupboards and closets full of "green" products, they have not been willing to pay higher prices or accept compromises on quality." (Reuters)

"Malaria: poor drugs for the poor?" - "Amongst all the talk of pandemic 'flu and intellectual property at last month's World Health Assembly in Geneva, there was little mention on what is rapidly becoming one of the most pressing issues in global health: quality and safety of medicines. As a result, multilateral agencies such as the Global Fund are free to continue jeapordising patient safety with their policy of procuring malarial drugs of unknown quality." (Roger Bate, CFD)

"Army of frogs to combat killer mosquitoes" - "Thousands of frogs could be shipped into the Indian capital as part of a government drive to prevent a severe outbreak of the mosquito-borne dengue fever after the monsoon rains." (The Times)

"Dying for FDA Reform" - "This year, Congress is considering a variety of legislative changes that would substantially affect the regulation of pharmaceutical drugs. There is growing momentum for congressional action to address several perceived drug safety problems, but all of the proposals under consideration would harm, not improve, patient safety by making it more difficult to get promising new drugs approved and into the hands of doctors and patients. These ill-conceived policies would also increase the already astronomical costs of bringing these medicines to market, raise prices, and reduce incentives for developers to undertake experimental projects." (Gregory Conko and Henry I. Miller, CEI)

"Canada threatens trans fat limits if no cuts made" - "OTTAWA - The Canadian government called on the food industry on Wednesday to tightly limit artery-clogging trans fats, and threatened mandatory cuts if enough is not done in the next two years." (Reuters)

"Skeptics Circle — Solstice Edition" - "The new edition of Skeptics Circle is up at Relatively Science all the way from New Zealand. Among this terrific collection of great skeptic writing and critical thinking, you're sure to find something that will make you laugh in the delight of discovery or sheer amazement. Don’t miss “How to Be a Crank” and “When absence of evidence can be evidence of absense.” (Junkfood Science)

"A cure is rarely found inside a computer" - "The news reported that pesticides may raise the risk for Parkinson’s disease. It is curious why the news chose to headline that correlation — when the study couldn’t find a link to pesticides that was greater than chance, a fluke or statistical error — and chose to ignore the single only tenable correlation." (Junkfood Science)

"Gene therapy offers hope to sufferers of Parkinson's disease" - "The first gene-therapy trial for treating Parkinson's disease has resulted in a significant improvement in all the patients who took part, with none suffering any side-effects, it was announced yesterday." (London Independent)

June 21, 2007

"AFM Commentary and Policy Recommendations on Counterfeit and Substandard Medicines" - "Around the globe, the production and distribution of substandard and counterfeit drugs is a vast, increasing and largely underreported, problem. Adulterated medicines contain little or none of the active ingredients found in their branded equivalent, and often have adverse health effects." (Africa Fighting Malaria)

"Taking a Bite Out of Vector-Transmitted Infectious Diseases" - "It is hard to overstate the medical importance and burden of vector-transmitted infectious diseases. Whether the metric used is mortality (malaria, for example, kills 1 million to 2 million people annually, most of them children under 5 years of age), morbidity (more than 70 million years of healthy living are lost to malaria, Chagas' disease, leishmaniasis, dengue fever, lymphatic filariasis, and the encephalitis viruses), or something as difficult to quantify as anxiety in a population (activities in outdoor playgrounds and high schools, for example, were moved or suspended along the south shore of Massachusetts this past fall because of concern raised by three cases of eastern equine encephalitis), the burden of these infections is enormous." (NEJM)

"“Eggsperts” ban advertising for eggs!" - "Britons awoke this morning to news that their government has deemed their breakfast staple — the egg — as not providing a balanced diet and not proper “healthy” eating." (Junkfood Science)

"Take home message from school: Kids, spend as little time reading as possible" - "Last month, we looked at proposed legislation in Texas to whip school children into shape. A press release issued by Cooper Aerobics Center, which sells the Fitnessgram and drafted the language in the proposed bill, said that the Governor had signed the bill into law:" (Junkfood Science)

"Feds, Legal Threats Put Snacks on a Diet" - "America's snack food makers are marketing smaller portion packs, using healthier fats and reducing sugar in some of the nation's favorite potato chips and cookies." (AP)

"Body absorbs 5lb of make-up chemicals a year" - "Women who use make-up on a daily basis absorb almost 5lb of chemicals a year into their bodies, it is claimed." (London Telegraph)

"EU Parliament Seeks Tighter Rules on Mercury Trade" - "BRUSSELS - The European Parliament sought on Wednesday to tighten proposals limiting the trade and use of mercury, backing an early date for the European Union to bar exports and seeking a ban on imports into the bloc." (Reuters)

"Sand More Deadly Than Sharks at Beach" - "ATLANTA -- Waves and sharks aren't the only dangers at the beach. More than two dozen young people have been killed over the last decade when sand holes collapsed on them, report father-and-son doctors who have made warning of the risk their personal campaign." (AP)

"Going Green: The Media Reveal a Major Color Scheme" - "Journalists lose their jaded attitudes and embrace an environmental pallet for just about everything." (Dan Gainor, Business & Media Institute)

"The Greens are Extreme, but You Won’t Hear it from the Media" - "Environmentalism is hip, green celebrities are “very sexy” and saving the planet is “simple,” according to the media.

It is certainly not “extreme” as far as journalists are concerned. The deluge of celebrity books, films and even rock concerts is making green look good – because journalists leave out the cost to individuals, businesses and the economy." (Julia A. Seymour, News Busters)

"Dilbert Takes on Green Fundamentalism" - "Dilbert, everyone's favorite office life cartoon, has started a series of strips making fun of environmental alarmism." (Matthew Sheffield, News Busters)

"Malpractice in Science: Where are the Truth Police?" - "I was writing at my laptop on Saturday, June 16, while watching television and the disbarment proceedings of the lawyer and prosecutor Mike Nifong of Raleigh, North Carolina. The proceedings were led by the chairman of the disciplinary committee, F. Lane Williamson, who stripped the prosecutor of his lawyer’s license and disbarred him." (Michael R. Fox, Hawaii Reporter)

"Documentation Of IPCC WG1 Bias by Roger A. Pielke Sr. and Dallas Staley - Part I" - "The 2007 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Reports have the following stated goals:

“A comprehensive and rigourous picture of the global present state of knowledge of climate change”


“The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has been established by WMO and UNEP to assess scientific, technical and socio-economic information relevant for the understanding of climate change, its potential impacts and options for adaptation and mitigation.”

However, the IPCC WG 1 Chapter 3 report failed in this goal." (Climate Science)

"Global Warming: Forecasts by Scientists versus Scientific Forecasts" (.pdf) - "The forecasts in the [IPCC] Report were not the outcome of scientific procedures. In effect, they present the opinions of scientists transformed by mathematics and obscured by complex writing." (Climate Science NZ)

"The Global Warming Challenge" - "Scott Armstrong of Wharton College US has issued a public $20,000 challenge to Al Gore on the accuracy of climate forecasting." (The Climate Bet)

"Forget warming - beware the new ice age" - "In the 1970s, leading scientists claimed that the world was threatened by an era of global cooling. Based on what we've learned this decade, says George Kukla, those scientists - and he was among them -- had it right. The world is about to enter another Ice Age." (Lawrence Solomon, Financial Post)

"Arctic ocean history is deciphered by ocean-drilling research team" - "Sediment cores retrieved from the Arctic's deep-sea floor by the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program’s Arctic Coring Expedition (ACEX) have provided long-absent data to scientists who report new findings in the June 21 issue of Nature." (Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Management International)

"Read the sunspots" - "The mud at the bottom of B.C. fjords reveals that solar output drives climate change - and that we should prepare now for dangerous global cooling" (R. Timothy Patterson, Financial Post)

"The Past and Future of Climate" (.pdf) - "In this presentation, I will put forward a prediction of climate to 2030 that differs from most in the public domain. It is a prediction of imminent cooling. And it is a prediction that you will be able to check up on every day." (David Archibald, WarwickHughes.com)

Central Park Temperature Comparisons - Before and After HCN Adjustment - We compared historical Central Park, NY data from the National Weather Service site in New York City as taken from the periphery of the park from 1909 to 1919 at the Arsenal Building 5th Ave (between 63rd & 64th) and then since 1920 at the Belvedere Castle on Transverse Rd (near 79th & 81st) with the Central Park data from NCDC Climate at a Glance USHCN database with HCN adjustments made. We picked one month (July) for the comparison. The two data sets are plotted below.


Note the adjustments were significant (a cooling exceeding 6 degrees from the mid 1950s to the mid 1990s.) Then inexplicably the adjustment diminished to less than 2 degrees. The result is what was a flat trend for the past 50 years became one with an accelerated warming in the past 20 years. It is not clear what changes in the metropolitan area occurred in the last 15 years to warrant a major adjustment to the adjustment. The park has remained the same and there has not been a population decline but a spurt in the city’s population in the 1990s.


See full story here. (ICECAP)

"Carbon emissions of native trees under the microscope" - "Scientists are trying to find out if native trees are adding to New Zealand's carbon emissions. Two projects investigating native trees and carbon emissions are under way at Ensis, a joint venture between Crown Research Institute Scion in Rotorua and Australia's CSIRO. Ensis senior scientist Dr Peter Beets is leading a programme looking at developing tools to predict native tree carbon emissions. "Our aim is to work out the amount of carbon that is being absorbed by living trees and the amount of carbon that is being released when trees die and decay," Dr Beets said. "We hope to find out if native trees actually reduce the country's overall emissions at all, or if the emissions the trees make just cancels any benefit." (New Zealand Herald)

"UK 'must act first to cut carbon'" - "Britain must get its house in order on climate change before persuading other countries to follow suit, the environment secretary has said." (BBC)

"CO2 emissions: China has surpassed U.S." - "China has become the #1 producer of carbon dioxide already in 2006. Congratulations - because the CO2 emissions may be viewed as a very good measure of the industrial strength.

It shouldn't be shocking for those who knew that China's 2005 production of carbon dioxide was only 2% below the U.S. levels. Why? Well, it's because China's CO2 output grows by about 9 percent a year. It is no coincidence that the number equals the GDP growth. Together with restrictive measures in the developed world, this meant that the U.S. was already 8% below China in 2006." (The Reference Frame)

See, it's your fault! "China building more power plants" - "Responsibility for China's soaring emissions lies not just in Beijing but also in Washington, Brussels and Tokyo," said Greenpeace UK director John Sauven. "All we've done is export a great slice of the West's carbon footprint to China, and today we see the result." (BBC)

"China in our hands" - "Why should China - now the world's top polluter - commit to reducing emissions when western countries have failed spectacularly to do so?" (Mark Lynas, London Independent)

"Economists: Climate change will cost state" - "Climate change will cost the state of North Carolina billions of dollars in land erosion, property damage and the loss of recreational and tourism business, a group of economists reported today." (News & Observer)

Economists base their forecasts on guesses from models based on temperature projections based on records we can't even agree on how to measure or even what precisely we are trying to measure (see the elusive absolute surface air temperature). Stupid game.

"Poll finds support for imposing rules on companies to limit emissions" - "Now that 85 percent of Americans believe global warming is "probably" happening, most favor government-imposed standards on energy and fuel companies to other policies designed to reduce greenhouse gases, according to a new poll released June 20 by Stanford University, New Scientist magazine and Resources for the Future, a Washington, D.C.-based think tank.

In the national survey, 73 percent of respondents said they support government-mandated low-carbon standards on electrical power generators—requiring companies to use alternative energy sources such as wind or solar power—in exchange for supporting a $10 increase in a typical monthly bill. Given the same price increase, only 47 percent of people favor "cap-and-trade" programs, in which the government imposes a limit on companies' greenhouse gas emissions but issues tradeable permits allowing them to emit a certain amount of pollution." (Stanford Report)

What people say in polls is no guarantee anyone's willing to pay for what they say they desire: Greenspace no guarantee of greenbacks (.pdf).

"Kyoto Carbon Trade: Market Solution or Illusion?" - "LONDON - Carbon trading is splitting opinions: for some it uses the profit motive and the ingenuity of markets to find the cheapest way to cut greenhouse gases. For others, it's just about smoke and thin air." (Reuters)

An even greater problem is that it can not physically achieve its stated purpose, with or without profit.

Hitching absolutely everything to the global warming bandwagon: "Problem facing species displaced by warming: nowhere to run" - "In a fragmented landscape – and with such rapid change – scientists worry that many plants and animals won't make it to cooler regions." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"Creating 'escape routes' for wildlife" - "Biological corridors, such as one planned from Panama to Mexico, would let species migrate to safer climates as global warming heats up their old habitats." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"Climate turns up heat on sea turtles" - "The ancient mariners need beach temperatures that are just right to hatch their eggs. If it's too warm, only females are born – and a species could vanish." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"Why amphibians matter" - "They form a key link in ecosystems worldwide. But they're dying off and global warming is a likely suspect." (The Christian Science Monitor)

Study: Global warming threatens gannets - British scientists have determined global warming is a major threat to the gannet, a bird species known for stable populations and breeding success. University of Leeds scientist Keith Hamer and colleagues determined diminishing fish stocks partly caused by rising sea temperatures are forcing the birds to search farther for food to give to their young. (Science Daily)

But: http://www.jncc.gov.uk/page-3120 - Numbers of seabirds breeding in Britain and Ireland have risen steadily over the last 30 years from around 5 million in 1969-70, to over 6 million in 1985-88, to almost 8 Million in 1998-2002.

And: http://www.snh.org.uk/pdfs/trends/seas/Seas_Part2.pdf - The northern gannet has shown a strong recovery from historical persecution, population estimates having increased by 32% during 1970-87 and by 47% during 1987-2000, yielding an increase of 93% over the whole period. -- h/t Dennis A.

"Peer Review" - "It is perhaps rather curmudgeonly to add a few “yes buts” when someone has paid you a bit of a compliment, but more needs to be said on the subject of peer review and editors, as raised by Charles Warren Hunt in Greenie Watch. There is certainly no question that the system is corruptible and has been corrupted, as ancient memories related in these pages have testified. Those were the days when science was free from the pressures of the new religious elite, and the situation is far, far worse now.

It is, however, difficult to see how modern scientific publication can exist without some form of specialist review system. Time was when one person could have a working knowledge of the whole of a subject area and would therefore make a competent journal editor. Scientific activity has expanded so much in the last half century that such a function is beyond one person. The danger before about 1980 was that journals could be effectively cornered by coteries who were promoting one particular theory. Now, of course, that small danger has become a universal threat, and even common practice.

It all comes down to the integrity of the editor. Under Sir John Maddox, for example, Nature maintained its reputation as the world’s leading science journal. It was an honour to have results published therein. The present day Nature is just a bad joke among those who still value the integrity of science. You only have to look at the extraordinary shenanigans its editors indulged in to avoid publishing valid criticism of the bogus “hockey stick” to see an example of corruption at the top." (Number Watch)

"Climate change movie begins production" - "Production has started on a British-New Zealand-funded film designed to enable scientists to explain climate change and what can be done about it.

The $1.1 million (600,000 pound) movie is a collaborative effort of Britain's Oxford University and New Zealand's Victoria University of Wellington.

The film -- with the working title "The Tipping Point" -- is being produced and directed by David Sington of DOX Productions and Simon Lamb of Oxford University, who collaborated several years ago to produce the acclaimed 8-hour BBC television series "Earth Story." (UPI)

From that bizarre alternate universe: "Climate change and the fight for resources 'will set world aflame'" - "Climate change has become a major security issue that could lead to "a world going up in flames", the United Nations' top environment official has warned. From rising sea levels in the Indian Ocean to the increasing spread of desert in Africa's Sahel region, global warming will cause new wars across the world, said Achim Steiner, executive director of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP)." (London Inpependent)

"Research shows Australian weather could get worse" - "Research by University of Queensland climatologists into Australia's past climate has shown just how extreme our weather can be. Dr Hamish McGowan, a senior lecturer in climatology with UQ's School of Geography, Planning & Architecture, has been using peat samples from North Stradbroke Island to reconstruct a picture of what Australia's climate has been like over the past 40,000 years. The record has a resolution comparable to those of Antarctic ice cores offering a unique insight to the past climates of South-East Queensland. “People talk about Australia being in the worst drought in 100 years,” Dr McGowan said. “But what the evidence is showing us is that in the last 5000 years South-East Queensland has been much drier than at present." (University of Queensland)

I'm in south-east Queensland and right now it's as cold as a witch's thorax. Global warming? Harrumph, we could wish!

"Study: Icebergs create ocean 'hot spots'" - "A U.S. study suggests Antarctic icebergs created by global climate change are having a major ecological impact." (UPI)

"Inconvenient truth--Nobody knows how to meet world power needs without emissions" - "Kyotoites assure us we can have our cake and eat it too. We can meet the world’s surging demand for affordable energy and, at the same time, dramatically reduce the carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions produced by the combustion of fossil fuels. Even carbon-intensive coal, we are assured, will have a future on Planet Gore, because technology will soon make it economical to capture the emissions and store billions of tons of CO2 underground in geologic formations." (Marlo Lewis, Planet Gore)

"European Union energy companies court Moscow" - "Their ties with Kremlin-backed Gazprom are vexing EU efforts to create an energy security policy that would lessen dependence on Russia." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"World Generators Go for Nuclear Power to Save World" - "LONDON - The world must embrace nuclear power if it is to create a low carbon economy this century and beat global warming, electricity generators said on Wednesday." (Reuters)

"Science Panel Finds Fault With Estimates of Coal Supply" - "WASHINGTON, June 20 — The United States may not have nearly as much coal as is popularly believed, and mining the remaining resources may be more dangerous for workers and the environment than current operations, the National Academy of Sciences said in a report Wednesday." (New York Times)

"Synfuel boondoggle" - "During World War II, the Allies largely cut off Germany's oil supply. To maintain their war effort, the Germans figured out how to make synthetic oil from coal. Later, the South Africans perfected the German technology to cope with international sanctions.

Consequently, making oil from coal is not some pie-in-the-sky dream, but something scientists and engineers have known how to do for quite a long time. The hang-up has always been cost — no one has ever figured out how to make synthetic oil for a price that is competitive with the conventional stuff." (Washington Times)

Now it's getting serious! "Mexican farmers replace tequila plant with corn" - "Ethanol demand has doubled corn prices, making it more profitable than agave." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"Biomass Seen Viable for UK Fuels, Govt Aid Needed" - "LONDON - Turning biomass from municipal waste and non-food crops into biofuels may be a viable technology in Britain, but bigger tax breaks are needed to cover high start-up costs, a report said on Wednesday." (Reuters)

"Is 'cleaner planes' claim hot air?" - "Aviation industry jumps on the environmental bandwagon at Paris Air Show." (Irish Independent)

"Fructose biofuel spells sweeter news for shift out of oil" - "Chemists in the United States say they have broken new ground in biofuels, transforming plant sugar into a liquid fuel that packs 40-percent more energy than ethanol and appears to have fewer of its drawbacks." (AFP)

Stupid regulation #... "Flushed with the best intentions" - "With mounting horror, customers at the Candana Designs fancy bathroom shop in Woollahra read the large sign erected in the toilet section: "To comply with Australian Standards all toilets are required to flush with a maximum of six litres of water. In order to comply with this regulation, manufacturers have reduced the size of the 'throat' inside the toilet pan. In most cases this necessitates using a toilet brush after flushing and flushing a second time."

In other words, to flush a toilet properly, you'll need to flush twice and use 12 litres of water - which is more than the amount used by the old nine-litre toilets with wider "throats", which are better at ingesting potential blockages.

Thousands of years of sanitation and a drought have brought us to this point: toilets that don't do what toilets are supposed to do. That famous 19th-century British pioneer of sanitary plumbing, Thomas Crapper, would be rolling in his grave." (Miranda Devine, Sydney Morning Herald)

"The mouflons of the Kerguelen archipelago: Surprising genetic diversity in the descendants of a single pair" - "Montreal, June 20, 2007 -- The team of Denis Réale, holder of the Canada Research Chair in Behavioural Ecology and Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at UQAM, recently published some remarkable research findings. Reconstructing the genetic history of a population of mouflons descended from a single pair, the researchers demonstrated that the animals’ genetic diversity increased over time, contrary to what the usual models predict. These results contradict the belief that a population descended from a small number of individuals will exhibit numerous deficiencies and reduced genetic diversity." (Université du Québec à Montréal)

"GM labelling 'may push up organic food prices'" - "The price of organic food could increase because of new rules about GM labelling, campaigners warn today." (London Telegraph)

Who cares? The problem is it pushes up the price of real food, too.

"Australia gives go-ahead for GM wheat testing" - "The first ever Australian field trials of genetically modified wheat will take place in Victoria this year, as the government aims to fight possible food shortages caused by drought." (Food Navigator)

"Researchers develop buckyballs to fight allergy" - "RICHMOND, Va. (June 20, 2007) -- A research team has identified a new biological function for a soccer ball-shaped nanoparticle called a buckyball – the ability to block allergic response, setting the stage for the development of new therapies for allergy." (Virginia Commonwealth University)

June 20, 2007

Different: "Expect Fewer North Atlantic Storms This Year - UK" - "LONDON - The North Atlantic is likely to see around 10 tropical storms this year, fewer than the long-term average for the July to November period, Britain's leading weather forecaster said on Tuesday.

"Ten tropical storms are predicted as the most likely number to occur in the North Atlantic during the July to November period, with a 70 percent chance that the number will be in the range 7 to 13," the Meteorological Office said.

Britain's official weather forecaster has not published an Atlantic tropical storm frequency forecast before, but says its global climate modelling method has proved more accurate in trials over the last two years than any other forecast." (Reuters)

"The current debate on the linkage between global warming and hurricanes" - "Shepherd and Knutson capture many facets of the major arguments for “human” and “natural” causes in the “surge” in hurricane activity. Following Hurricane Katrina and the parade of storms that affected the conterminous United States in 2004–2005, the apparent recent increase in intense hurricane activity in the Atlantic basin, and the reported increases in recent decades in some hurricane intensity and duration measures in several basins have received considerable attention.

Following a recent report issued by the World Meteorological Organization, this perspective is much needed because policymakers, the public and media need a balanced perspective and an appreciation for how difficult this problem is." (Blackwell Publishing Ltd.)

"New tools to forecast hurricane rainfall inland" - "All eyes are on where hurricanes make landfall, but the massive storms actually cause the most deaths inland, where severe flooding often surprises residents." (University of Florida)

"Did Jones et al 1990 “fabricate” its quality control claims?" - "Did Jones et al 1990 “fabricate” its quality control claims? This hard-hitting question is asked by Doug Keenan here. He cites the following claims from Jones et al 1990 and Wang et al:

The stations were selected on the basis of station history: we chose those with few, if any, changes in instrumentation, location or observation times. [Jones et al.]

They were chosen based on station histories: selected stations have relatively few, if any, changes in instrumentation, location, or observation times…. [Wang et al.]

Keenan observed that those statements are vital for the papers. For many years, no one knew what stations were used in Jones et al 1990. Only after recent FOI actions in the UK publicized here at CA did a list of the stations used in Jones et al 1990 become available in March 2007, after years of obstruction. Since then, Keenan has corresponded recently with both Jones and Wang, seeking a valid explanation of the above claims. His conclusion:

The essential point here is that the quoted statements from Jones et al. and Wang et al. cannot be true and could not be in error by accident. The statements are fabricated." (Climate Audit)

"The Earth today stands in imminent peril" - "Global warming scientists will have to learn quantum gravity by the end of July. Why?

Well, it's because we can see that every day, their predictions get more catastrophic than the previous day by an order of magnitude. Roughly 35 orders of magnitude from the present numbers, you find the Planck scale.

Let me demonstrate this trend on two recent examples." (The Reference Frame)

"Independent review of the Met Office Hadley Centre" - "The independent review of the Met Office Hadley Centre commissioned by Defra and the MoD has now been published. The review took place over the winter and examined all aspects of the operation of the Met Office Hadley Centre." ()

From the full report: Policy driven science is called for:
2. Strategy and Planning

We recommend that the Hadley Centre links its strategy and planning processes more closely to the policy outputs its customers require. This process is underway as part of the negotiation of the new contracts, and should be strengthened. The strategy should be linked to the modelling strategy and plans for delivery including a resourcing strategy, supercomputing resource plan and communications strategy.

Hadley has implemented processes to involve more junior members of staff in the strategy development process and we recommend that it explores ways to include outside experts in its strategic planning process to provide a challenge for its own staff’s assumptions and world view. We recommend that the Hadley Centre maintain its science strategy, modelling strategy and delivery plans as living documents, always clearly linked to the customer policy requirements. -- h/t Dennis A.

"Deepak Lal: Climate change - Sun & the stars vs C02 - I" - "When the sun shines more brightly, global temperatures will rise, and vice versa.

The world is being spooked by climate change. The great and the good, aided and abetted by the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and the Stern Report in the UK, have convinced themselves and large part of the electorates in the West that global warming is caused by human emissions of noxious greenhouse gases, particularly CO2. As India and China have the two largest human conglomerations, arising at long last from their pre-industrial slumber with rapid growth, their noxious emissions will inevitably rise. So that, even if the past concentrations of these pollutants were caused by the currently developed countries in their own escape from mass poverty, the future rise in emissions will come largely from the Asian giants. Hence the growing clamour by the developed countries to bring India and China into some global system of mandatory curbs on carbon emissions." (Deepak Lal, Business Standard)

"A New Paper That Highlights the First-Order Radiative Forcing Of Black Carbon Deposition" - "A 2005 National Research Council Report, Climate Science, and our research studies have summarized studies that show that black carbon deposition on snow and sea ice is a major positive radiative forcing." (Climate Science)

Metamorphosis - That Essay seems to have stirred up some interest: apart from the knee jerk personal attacks from the likes of Alex Kirby, there has been a considerable response of a more sympathetic nature. One result is that your bending author has been transmogrified into your bumbling broadcaster. Here is an interview with Michal Coren of Toronto Radio. It is in two parts: Part 1 | Part 2 (Number Watch)

Yeah, sure... "Kyoto Carbon Projects Mostly Sound - UN Official" - "LONDON - Unscrupulous projects falsely claiming to cut greenhouse gas emissions under the Kyoto Protocol on global warming are isolated incidents, if they exist at all, the UN's climate change chief said on Tuesday." (Reuters)

... and we'd buy used cars from them, too ;)

"Pork, the New Green Meat" - "Al Gore (among many others) deserves a hand for conjuring up the present mood of public acquiescence to legislative proposals aimed at global warming. Over to you, Congress: Whether we face a climate crisis, we certainly now face a climate pork crisis." (Holman W Jenkins, Wall Street Journal)

From CO2 Science this week:

Carbon Dioxide: A Vital Atmospheric Resource Under Siege: Is it possible that a cucumber can tell us more about the subject than the U.S. Supreme Court?

Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week:
This issue's Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week comes from the Indo-Pacific Warm Pool. To access the entire Medieval Warm Period Project's database, click here.

Subject Index Summary:
Herbivory (Woody Plants - Maple): Will maple trees suffer more or less damage from herbivorous insects as the air's CO 2 content climbs ever higher?

Plant Growth Data:
This week we add new results (blue background) of plant growth responses to atmospheric CO 2 enrichment obtained from experiments described in the peer-reviewed scientific literature for: Common Velvetgrass, Rice, Soybean, and Rivet Wheat.

Journal Reviews:
Solar Activity, Earth's Magnetic Field and Galactic Cosmic Rays: Is it possible they may be the major players in determining earth's climatic state?

A 2000-Year Record of Solar Forcing of Climate in Finland: What does it suggest about the origin and level of warmth of the Medieval Warm Period?

Four Winters of Urban Heat Island Data from Barrow, Alaska (USA): What do they suggest about our ability to accurately assess the magnitude of historical global warming?

Responses of Marine Microalgae to Very High Atmospheric CO 2 Concentrations: Are they positive or negative?

High Temperature and Ultraviolet-B Radiation Stresses on Soybeans: How are they impacted by a doubling of the air's CO 2 concentration?

Conception, MO Temperature Record of the Week
This issue's Temperature Record of the Week is from Conception, MO. During the period of most significant greenhouse gas buildup over the past century, i.e., 1930 and onward, Conception's mean annual temperature has cooled by 0.12 degrees Fahrenheit. Not much global warming here! (co2science.org)

"WWF: Desalination could aggravate climate change" - "GENEVA: Extracting salt from seawater to make it drinkable is the wrong way to handle water shortages around the world and could exacerbate climate change, a leading conservation group said Tuesday. But independent scientists disputed the findings and said desalination plays a minor role in global warming." (Associated Press)

First, do no harm: "Crunch Time on Energy" - "The Senate will tell us this week whether it really wants to do something about oil dependency and global warming or if it is just fooling around." (New York Times)

"CAFE Kills, and Then Some: Six Reasons to Be Skeptical of Fuel Economy Standards" - "BACKGROUND: In 1975, Congress enacted Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) regulations to reduce gasoline consumption. Current CAFE standards require an average of 27.2 miles per gallon (mpg) for cars and 21.6 mpg for light trucks. As part of its debate over the Energy Bill (S.1419), the U.S. Senate is now considering raising CAFE standards to require all passenger cars and light trucks to average 52 mpg. Senators Carl Levin (D-MI), Christopher Bond (R-MO) and Mark Pryor (D-AR) have proposed an alternative increase, which would require a 36 mpg standard for cars by 2022 and 30 mpg for light trucks by 2025." (National Center)

"House panel drops auto fuel standard from plan" - "WASHINGTON - Leaders of the committee writing energy legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives backed away on Monday from controversial elements of the bill, including new fuel economy standards for automobiles." (Reuters)

"Bad information breeds harmful legislation" - "As Congress continues to deliberate energy and global warming bills, President Bush’s new climate initiative has altered the debate, at least at the international level. Clearheaded analysis and accurate information is essential – or narrow political and economic interests could run roughshod over consumers." (Paul Driessen, CFP)

"Consumers distrust business on climate change" - "A wave of green initiatives to counter climate change will probably have limited impact because nine out of 10 consumers are sceptical about the information from companies and governments, according to a new survey out later this week.

More than 40% of consumers distrust what they hear about global warming from businesses while a further 50% do not know whether to believe corporate claims or not.

This contrasts with 60% who trust scientists and almost half who put the same faith in environmental groups such as Friends of the Earth and Greenpeace, according to the report from Consumers International and Accountability." (The Guardian)

And consumers are right but for the wrong reasons. No 'green initiative' can counter the populist misconception of 'climate change' (because it simply doesn't exist) and no amount of 'carbon constraint' in the energy supply will make a measurable difference in global mean temperature.

"Ban, The Bomb" - "The new U.N. secretary general invokes a Twinkie defense, excusing Islamofascist genocide in Darfur by blaming it on global warming. Forget the Chinese weapons. According to Ban Ki-moon, your SUV is responsible." (IBD)

"Malpractice in Hawaii Energy Policy" - "The June 9, 2007 issue of The Garden Island news describes a bill passed by the Hawaii State Legislature. The bill is entitled Global Warming Solutions Act of 2007, and is supposed to identify and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The article also indicated that Gov. Linda Lingle had until July 10th to act on the bill, which severely cuts and caps Hawaii "greenhouse emissions" to levels equivalent to those of 1990." (Michael R. Fox, Hawaii Reporter)

"Dutch data shows China surpassed the US in 2006 carbon-dioxide emissions" - "China for the first time spewed out more carbon-dioxide emissions last year than the United States, a Dutch government research body said Tuesday." (AFP)

"As glaciers melt and rivers dry up, coal-fired power stations multiply" - "On a bad day - which can be hundreds in a year - the ancient city of Linfen in the northern province of Shanxi is environmental hell. Named by the World Bank last year as having the worst air quality on Earth, its 3.5 million people more often than not choke on coal dust; its soil and its rivers are covered with soot, and its Buddhas are blackened and shrouded in a toxic mist.

The cause is Linfen's 196 iron foundries, its 153 coking plants, its unregulated coalmines, tar factories, steelworks and domestic homes, all of which burn cheap, easily accessible brown coal.

Shanxi is the centre of China's vast and growing coal industry, which was pinpointed yesterday by Dutch government scientists as the major culprit, along with the cement industry, in the country's sudden surge to the top of the world's league of greenhouse gas emitters." (The Guardian)

"Our Superjumbo Will Save the Planet, Airbus Says" - "LE BOURGET, France - Airbus attempted a green-friendly makeover of its A380 superjumbo on Tuesday, saying the world's largest airliner could save the planet." (Reuters)

"Greenpeace Targets UK Airports in Heated CO2 Debate" - "LONDON - The war of words over aviation's impact on the climate heated up this week, as Greenpeace campaigners handed out free train tickets to UK air travellers while pilots urged them to stop feeling guilty." (Reuters)

Greenpeace? Who cares?

"Germans Reject CO2 Privilege for Brown Coal Plants" - "BERLIN - Germany's ruling coalition agreed on Monday on tough environmental rules for power stations which denied special privileges to brown coal-fired plants, high-ranking party officials said." (Reuters)

"Green technology gets hotter" - "With a national carbon trading scheme firmly on the agenda, renewable energy investments are looking at least a little more viable." (Sydney Morning Herald)

Actually only a little less unviable.

"Democrats And Pipe Dreams" - "On the 30th anniversary of the Alaskan pipeline, the Democrats tout a plan that would have blocked its construction. One way to reduce our dependence on energy from abroad is to produce more here." (IBD)

"Gone with the Wind" - "Renewable Portfolio Standard Threatens Consumers and the Industrial Heartland." (Myron Ebell and William Yeatman, CEI)

"Europe's Biofuel Makers Cry Foul Over US Tax Break" - "MADRID - Cheap US biodiesel threatens to put European producers out of business and governments should take action, Spain's renewable energy association APPA said on Tuesday." (Reuters)

"'Green' Helpline to Cut Consumers' Carbon Footprint" - "LONDON - A new service designed to help consumers reduce their carbon footprint aims to boost the number of "green" homes in Britain by half a million within a year." (Reuters)

"From the recommended reading file: Forward Motion" - "This writer's well-written, thoughtful and compassionate article is one of the best among the growing numbers of those who are starting to question and think about the “obesity crisis.” (Junkfood Science)

"When does it stop becoming a paradox?" - "As has been shown in heart failure and kidney failure patients, this study found that obesity was associated with a lower all-cause mortality risk for people without heart failure. It was reported in the news as another “obesity paradox,” along with attempts to explain away the findings and give repeated admonitions that this doesn’t really mean obesity offers a health advantage." (Junkfood Science)

"Be thin or die shouldn’t be the options" - "This latest news story brought out of the closet what has been increasingly noted in the medical literature for more than twenty years. Growing numbers of young people are knowingly choosing blindness, limb amputation, kidney failure and death rather than be fat. Just what they’re doing to control their weight is something no one’s wanted to speak about for fear of giving more young people ideas, but it’s too late for that." (Junkfood Science)

"Your genes can and will be used against you?" - "As most every disease and health indice is being found to have a genetic link, this proposed use of our private genetic information by insurers in Britain to set premiums is a slippery slope towards discrimination." (Junkfood Science)

"Resistant gut bacteria will not go away by themselves" - "E. coli bacteria that have developed resistance to antibiotics will probably still be around even if we stop using antibiotics, as these strains have the same good chance as other bacteria of continuing to colonise the gut, according to a thesis at the Sahlgrenska Academy." (Swedish Research Council)

"Plastic bag revolt spreads across Britain" - "Spurred by a filmmaker's documentary, the English town of Modbury became the first in Europe to ban them outright." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"China to Keep Grains Goals Despite Climate Change" - "BEIJING - Pressure from global warming is unlikely to change China's policy of maximising domestic grain production, a prominent climate scientist said, but the country is starting to look at ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from farming." (Reuters)

"Biotech for sustainable agriculture" - "In the 1960s, India produced only about 10 million metric tonnes of wheat annually, and crop failures created massive food shortages that required emergency shipments of grain to prevent widespread famine. Today, India produces over 70 million metric tonnes of wheat. This is due in large part to the success of the Green Revolution, based on new genetic improvements of crops combined with efficient use of crop production inputs." (Economic Times)

"Congress May End Ban On Genetically Modified Crops" - "SACRAMENTO Congress is now considering a bill that would eliminate bans on genetically modified crops. Four California counties have such bans in place." (CBS 5)

"GM Crops Can Contribute to Increased Food Production and Reduced Hunger" - "Renowned agricultural economist Dr. Per Pinstrup-Andersen discusses benefits of genetic engineering in agriculture for developing countries." (PRWEB)

"Duma Drafts Tough GM Food Bill" - "The Russian Duma’s Security Committee has drafted a bill banning production and sale of genetically modified food. Moscow authorities threw their support behind the legislation. Moscow Duma deputies were among the drafters while Mayor Yuri Luzhkov called on President Vladimir Putin to address the GM food issue head-on." (Kommersant)

June 19, 2007

Still a socialist nitwit: "At 90, an Environmentalist From the ’70s Still Has Hope" - "Before Al Gore became synonymous with global warming, Barry Commoner was warning the public about the delicate condition of planet Earth. Long associated with the Center for the Biology of Natural Systems at Queens College, Dr. Commoner has for decades been agitating to restore ecological balance to the biosphere, whether by outlawing nuclear testing or spreading the practice of recycling. Time magazine once nicknamed him “the Paul Revere of the environmental movement.” (New York Times)

'Reparations' rather than vector control -- what a jerk!

"Africa Can Solve Her Own Problems" - "On the evidence of such archaeological finds as Lucy, the australopithecine female unearthed in Ethiopia's Hadar region, Africa is the cradle of the human race.

Africa was also home to notable ancient civilisations-the Egypt of the Pharaohs, the Ashanti Empire of the Gold Coast, and the Zimbabwe settlements in the south. Given such a head start, it is ironic that Africa should now find itself at the bottom of the ladder in terms of human development.

Most of the countries in sub-Saharan Africa lag far behind other developing nations with respect to critical health indicators such as maternal and infant mortality and life expectancy.

Granted, Africa's legacy of particularly exploitative colonial occupation by European powers is partly to blame.

However, Africans themselves must bear the responsibility of failing to create an enabling environment for better health-safe water and sanitation." (East African Business Week)

Trevor in Puffington: "Medical Journal Malpractice?" - "The New England Journal of Medicine claims it's all about scholarship; but did it undermine serious research by whipping up a media frenzy over Avandia?" (Trevor Butterworth, STATS)

"Low-carb diet 'cancer risk' claim" - "Low-carbohydrate diets may increase the risk of people suffering bowel cancer, scientists have claimed. Researchers from Aberdeen's Rowett Research Institute believe there is a link between eating less carbohydrate and reducing cancer-fighting bacteria." (BBC)

At least that was the case for, oh... a half-dozen men.

"Indonesia court to summon New York Times via public notice" - "A court in Indonesia will summons the New York Times and one of its reporters via the media after they failed to appear to defend themselves in a defamation suit brought by a US mining executive, his lawyer said Monday.

Richard Ness is suing the newspaper and reporter Jane Perlez in the Jakarta Central Court over stories published in 2004 that claimed mining giant Newmont polluted a bay on the island of Sulawesi with tonnes of waste from its now defunct gold mine.

Ness and the local unit of Newmont were cleared in April of criminal charges that they polluted Buyat Bay with arsenic and mercury from the mine.

Ness is seeking about 65 million dollars in damages." (AFP)

"The BBC can't kick its addiction to bias" - "When it comes to accusations of Left-liberal bias, the BBC is a bit like an alcoholic, thinks Damian Thompson. It is in denial but, deep down, it knows it has a problem." (London Telegraph)

"European Space Agency inks deal for next-generation environment satellite" - "The European Space Agency (ESA) on Monday announced it had ordered the first of five Earth-monitoring satellites to succeed Envisat, the biggest environmental watchdog ever launched." (AFP)

News Flash! Curve fitting amazingly fits curves! "Climate models consistent with ocean warming observations" - "LIVERMORE, Calif. - Climate models are reliable tools that help researchers better understand the observed record of ocean warming and variability.

That's the finding of a group of Livermore scientists, who in collaboration with colleagues at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, had earlier established that climate models can replicate the ocean warming observed during the latter half of the 20th century, and that most of this recent warming is caused by human activities.

The observational record also shows substantial variability in ocean heat content on interannual-to-decadal time scales. The new research by Livermore scientists demonstrates that climate models represent this variability much more realistically than previously believed." (DOE/Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory)

Nota bene: "Comment on the Nature Weblog By Kevin Trenberth Entitled “Predictions of climate”" - "Our research has led us to conclude that
1. Climate prediction is an initial value problem; e.g. see Pielke, R.A., 1998: Climate prediction as an initial value problem. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 79, 2743-2746
2. Multi-decadal skillful regional climate prediction is not yet been achieved; e.g see Pielke Sr., Roger A., 2005: Public Comment on CCSP Report “Temperature Trends in the Lower Atmosphere: Steps for Understanding and Reconciling Differences”. 88 pp including appendices.

There is a remarkable weblog on Nature from an unexpected source that supports these views. The weblog is presented by one of the Lead Authors of Chapter 3 the IPCC WG1 report [Kevin Trenberth] and is in direct conflict with statements that climate science is settled." (Climate Science)

"Father of Climatology Throws Up at the Thought of Al Gore's 'An Inconvenient Truth'" - "Reid Bryson, the 87-year-old considered to be the father of scientific climatology, has once again spoken out strongly against anthropogenic global warming theories being regularly disseminated by alarmists in the media and the scientific community." (Noel Sheppard, News Busters)

Sometimes you wish Hansen really was muzzled, don't you? "The Earth today stands in imminent peril" - "and nothing short of a planetary rescue will save it from the environmental cataclysm of dangerous climate change. Those are not the words of eco-warriors but the considered opinion of a group of eminent scientists writing in a peer-reviewed scientific journal.

Six scientists from some of the leading scientific institutions in the United States have issued what amounts to an unambiguous warning to the world: civilisation itself is threatened by global warming.

They also implicitly criticise the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) for underestimating the scale of sea-level rises this century as a result of melting glaciers and polar ice sheets.

Instead of sea levels rising by about 40 centimetres, as the IPCC predicts in one of its computer forecasts, the true rise might be as great as several metres by 2100. That is why, they say, planet Earth today is in "imminent peril". (London Independent)

"Will Media Ever Investigate Accuracy of Weather Stations?" - "Assume for a moment there was evidence some weather stations around the country were underestimating mean temperatures. Would a media fixated on expanding climate change alarmism investigate and report this phenomenon to demonstrate that the planet was actually warmer than people think?

“60 Minutes,” “20/20,” and “Dateline” would have all done rather lengthy exposés into the matter, correct?" (Noel Sheppard, News Busters)

BAS press release for gorebal warmening stunt: "Antarctica – the coolest Live Earth gig in the world"  -"What must surely be the coolest gig in this summer’s Live Earth concerts takes place at the British Antarctic Survey’s (BAS) Rothera Research Station. On 7 July the science team’s indie-rock house band, Nunatak* will debut in the global event that features over 100 of the world’s top musical acts. Concerts from all 7 continents will raise awareness of climate change world-wide." (Press Release)

What a marvelous misuse of public research funds...

Albert trying to drum up some more investment profit: "Gore Says US Business Woken Up to Global Warming" - "LONDON - Businesses across the United States have woken up to the climate crisis but the administration of President George W. Bush is failing to act fast enough, according to former US Vice President Al Gore.

In a new, hard-hitting foreword to a reissue of his bestselling book "Earth in the balance", Gore says Wall Street and city mayors across the United States have started to take action and, while time is running out, the battle is not lost." (Reuters)

"Winnipeg River: Better than Ever" - "There is little doubt that increasing atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases will generally cause the Earth to warm and alter precipitation patterns in various parts of the globe. Changes in precipitation and temperature will thereby impact hydrological systems, and the global warming alarmists love to show images of floods or dried-up streams to make the threat of the anthropogenic greenhouse effect look as bad as possible. Indeed, the global warming scare has deep roots in the drought of 1988 over the southeastern United States that created an anomalous low flow on the Mississippi River (recall headlines about the Mississippi River drying up?). If you have forgotten, the summer of 1988 also gave us the huge wildfires of the West (Yellowstone Park burned in that summer and fall) as well as Hurricane Gilbert, and those images of how global warming will impact us have lived on powerfully ever since." (WCR)

"Blaming SUV owners for genocide in Africa?" - "Al Gore and other alarmists call global warming a “moral issue.” But for them it is actually a moralizing issue. Global warming allows them to impute moral agency to the workings of inanimate Nature and blame political adversaries (George Bush, America the fuelish) when bad things (hurricanes, drought) happen to good people.

By the same token, global warming becomes a kind of Twinkie Defense for tyrants and thugs. “You can’t really blame the Sudanese Government for killing all those peasants; global warming made them do it.” (Marlo Lewis, Planet Gore)

"World Desertification Day Puts Spotlight On Neglected Crisis" - "The United Nations on Sunday sounds a loud alarm about desertification, warning that global warming is helping to drive the onward march of parched land and, in years to come, millions of people could be driven from their homes. Of six billion humans, nearly a fifth are threatened directly or indirectly by desertification, experts warn ahead of the UN's annual World Day to Combat Desertification." (AFP)

Flashback --  another gorebal warmening 'disaster': "Trees and crops reclaim desert in Niger" - "GUIDAN BAKOYE, Niger: In this dust-choked region, long seen as an increasingly barren wasteland decaying into desert, millions of trees are flourishing, thanks in part to poor farmers whose simple methods cost little or nothing at all.

Better conservation and improved rainfall have led to at least 3 million newly tree-covered hectares, or 7.4 million acres, in Niger, researchers have found. And this has been achieved largely without relying on the large- scale planting of trees or other expensive methods often advocated by African politicians and aid groups for halting desertification, the process by which soil loses its fertility.

Recent studies of vegetation patterns, based on detailed satellite images and on-the-ground inventories of trees, have found that Niger, a place of persistent hunger and deprivation, has recently added millions of new trees and is now far greener than it was 30 years ago." (IHT)

"High price for load of hot air" - "WITH understandable reluctance, Prime Minister John Howard recently donned the political hair-shirt of a carbon trading system. On the same day, NASA chief Michael Griffin commented in a US radio interview that "I am not sure that it is fair to say that (global warming) is a problem that we must wrestle with". (Courier-Mail) | Unedited version

"The garden of good and evil" - "With its hectoring rhetoric, the green movement is in danger of becoming a quasi religion, writes Simon Castles." (The Age)

The Lavoisier Group 2007 Workshop: Rehabilitating Carbon Dioxide -- 29 - 30 June, 2007

Illustration (Number Watch)

See also: Global Warming: How It All Began by Richard Courtney

They don't say? "Global warming brings early spring to Arctic: study" - "Plants and animals in upper Greenland have adapted their lifecycles to the arrival of the Arctic spring several weeks earlier than a decade ago, according to a study released Monday." (AFP)

Critters are highly adaptable in regions subject to large climatic variation -- go figure!

"South East Queensland Drought" - "So much has been talked about the drought of recent, and how it's all global warming that is the main cause. Queensland's water reserves are the worst hit and luckily this year we've seen a good increase in rain. But was global warming really the cause?" (Gust of Hot Air)

Sigh... "Public health in developing countries to suffer most from climate change" - "Climate change is an emerging threat to global public health. It is also highly inequitable, as the greatest risks are to the poorest populations, who have contributed least to greenhouse gas emissions. The rapid economic development and the concurrent urbanization of poorer countries mean that developing-country cities will be both vulnerable to health hazards from climate change and, simultaneously, an increasing contributor to the problem. Climate Change and Developing-Country Cities, one of the articles in the current supplement to Springer’s Journal of Urban Health focuses on the implications for environmental health and equity. It reviews the specific health vulnerabilities of urban populations in developing countries and highlights the range of large direct health effects of energy policies that are concentrated in urban areas." (Springer)

"Canada's Parliamentarians Cave In Completely To Global Warming Advocacy" - "In April of 2006, 61 of the world's leading climate experts sent an open letter to Prime Minister Harper in which they proposed "that balanced, comprehensive public-consultation sessions be held so as to examine the scientific foundation of the federal government's climate-change plans." The scientists continued "Although many of us made the same suggestion to then-prime ministers Martin and Chrétien, neither responded, and, to date, no formal, independent climate-science review has been conducted in Canada."

Instead of following their suggestion, Harper ignored the specialists and has adopted the rhetoric of Martin and Chrétien. Even now, the climate science hearings have never been held." (Timothy Ball and Tom Harris, DOB Magazine)

"Plan to alter ocean chemistry hits rough seas" - "OTTAWA -- A clash with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is threatening to scuttle an American company's plan to "seed" the Pacific Ocean with iron dust to offset global warming.

Planktos Inc., which has offices in Vancouver and San Francisco, wants to set sail this month from Florida to dump more than 45 tonnes of iron dust into the sea near the Galapagos Islands.

The iron nutrients would stimulate the growth of phytoplankton, which would then absorb large amounts of carbon dioxide - an experimental process Planktos compares to reforestation." (CanWest News Service)

"Booming economy makes Spain worst EU offender in fight to cut levels of CO2" - "Greenhouse gas emissions are rising in more than half the countries of the EU, according to official figures yesterday that threaten to undermine its call for the rest of the world to join a new climate-change treaty.

European leaders including Tony Blair and Angela Merkel, the German Chancellor, have led the call for global targets to succeed the Kyoto Protocol, but 14 of the 27 EU countries are pumping out higher annual levels of CO2, says the European Environment Agency." (The Times)

"Electricity generators emissions trading gain" - "Britain’s electricity generators could make windfall profits of about £1.5bn a year from the European Union’s emissions trading scheme, industry estimates suggest, raising further questions about the operation of the programme intended to combat global warming.

Across Europe, the profits could add up to about €20bn (£13.6bn) a year.

The profits are created because of the way the emissions trading scheme works. rather than because of sharp practice by the companies. Electricity prices are higher as a result of the scheme. But generators’ costs do not rise to the same extent, as they are given most of their permits for free." (Financial Times)

"London is capital of carbon trading" - "London is poised to reinforce its role as the world's carbon trading 'capital' after cornering the lion's share of EU linked business and handling a large slice of international projects tied to reducing emissions.

New forecasts in a report from International Financial Services point to the City capturing a bigger share of the rapidly expanding market as banks and brokers become more heavily involved in the business and improve the framework for a forward market." (London Telegraph)

"Pollution Permits Burn European Consumers; E.ON Gains" - "June 18 -- Pollution permits, the biggest money- loser for commodity investors this year, are poised for a rebound that may spark a 10 percent jump in electricity costs for the 260 million consumers from London to Bucharest.

Prices for allowances that give utilities and factories the right to pump a ton of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere will climb 20 percent in the next 12 months, according to Lueder Schumacher, an analyst at Dresdner Kleinwort in London. The reason: Governments are handing out fewer certificates in the three-year program." (Bloomberg)

"Punitive duties proposed in Germany for polluter nations" - "Berlin - German Environment Minister Sigmar Gabriel has called for punitive duties on imports from polluters if India and China do not move to slow the growth in greenhouse gas emissions." (Deutsche Presse-Agentur)

"Warming to Law" - "In its first case confronting global warming, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in April that greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide are air pollutants that the Environmental Protection Agency can regulate. As a consequence, experts agree that greenhouse emissions from automobiles and possibly power plants will face regulations. The debate now will focus on how strict—or lax—those rules will be." (SciAm)

Hopefully: "Interest Groups Could Slow Energy Action" - "WASHINGTON - Three powerful lobbying forces - automakers, electric utilities and the coal industry - are confounding Democrats' efforts to forge a less-polluting energy policy.

Disputes over automobile fuel economy, use of coal as a motor fuel, and requirements for utilities to use more wind or biomass to generate electricity have threatened to stall energy legislation in both the Senate and House.

The issues have been the focus of intense lobbying by the coal industry, electric utilities heavily dependent on coal, and by automobile manufacturers trying to block new fuel economy requirements from Washington and in a dozen states." (Associated Press)

"BHP Billiton makes $357m climate change pledge" - "BHP Billiton Ltd has pledged $US300 million ($357 million) to support low-emission technology development and set itself new environmental efficiency targets in its revised climate change policy.

The world's biggest miner will commit the money over the five years to 2012 to support industry research, provide capital funding for new internal energy projects and support the efforts of employees and communities in reducing their emissions.

BHP Billiton also hopes to assist governments planning to create market-based mechanisms such as emissions trading." (AAP)

"Global Warming: A Real Solution" - "In early May, 100 of the nation's top business leaders gathered for a summit at a private resort nestled on 250 acres in California's Napa Valley. The attendees, gathered at the invitation of Silicon Valley venture capitalists, included CEOs and other top executives from such Fortune 500 corporations as Wal-Mart, Proctor & Gamble and BP. They had been invited to discuss ways to end America's fossil-fuel addiction and save the world from global warming. But in reality they had come to make money for their companies -- and that may turn out to be the thing that saves us." (Robert Kennedy, Rolling Stone)

"Ontario Aims to Cut Emissions, to Shut Coal Plants" - "TORONTO - The Ontario government plans to meet its greenhouse gas emissions target by 2014 by shutting the province's four remaining coal-fired power plants, Premier Dalton McGuinty said Monday." (Reuters)

"Paying back the planet" - "From early next year, passengers on Air New Zealand will be invited to pay a few extra dollars to offset their carbon footprint.

The money will go to specific forest planting and conservation projects within New Zealand. Some plant-a-tree schemes overseas - where people pay extra with their booking to balance the environmental damage of air travel - have been discredited. The money has disappeared into non-specific projects with little evidence of environmental benefits.

Air New Zealand CEO Rob Fyfe is promising a scheme with integrity and accountability." (New Zealand Herald)

"EU, US launch airline pollution initiative" - "The European Commission and the US Federal Aviation Authority announced an initiative on Monday at the Paris Air Show aimed at reducing pollution by airlines on transatlantic flights.

The AIRE project, short for the Atlantic Interoperabilitiy Initiative to Reduce Emissions, is to look at ways of reducing waiting times for landing aircraft and promoting jets with lower greenhouse gas and sound emissions." (AFP)

"New aircraft takes off for a greener but noisier future" - "Targets for reducing aircraft noise will have to be sacrificed to halve the climate change emissions of a new generation of airliners, easyJet said yesterday. The budget airline unveiled a model of what it described as an “eco-jet”, which would use open rotor engines invented in response to the oil crisis of the 1970s. It hopes that these engines will generate 50 per cent less CO2 than those used on its current aircraft. Manufacturers abandoned the design in the 1980s because the oil price fell and fuel efficiency became less important. The engines would be much more efficient than existing ones, but also noisier because they would have no outer shell around the rotating blades." (The Times)

"Fervor to ban light bulbs dims" - "Assembly majority is now behind bill setting energy-efficient rules for manufacturers." (Sacramento Bee)

"Russia's Thermal Coal Demand Seen Tripling by 2020" - "MOSCOW - Demand for thermal coal in Russia, the world's fifth-largest coal miner, could more than triple by 2020 as the country invests billions of dollars to expand its power network, industry officials said on Monday." (Reuters)

"China Slows Coal-Liquids, Ethanol Push on Water Fear" - "HONG KONG - Beijing is trying to slow the push on water-intensive alternative energy on mounting signs that China might face a serious water shortage in the future.

This may stymie the second-largest energy consumer's plans to turn its huge coal reserves and agricultural land into transport fuel, and lead it to continue relying on greater imports to fuel its booming economy, a bullish factor for global oil markets." (Reuters)

"Russia Has Green Idea for Growing Arctic Cucumbers" - "MOSCOW - Russia's environment minister has a novel suggestion for natural gas from its Arctic north oilfields that is usually wasted -- harness it to heat greenhouses for growing cucumbers." (Reuters)

World Wide Font of nonsense: "Desalination No Answer to Water Crisis - WWF" - "GENEVA - Removing salt from sea water to overcome a worldwide shortage of drinking water could end up worsening the crisis, environmental group WWF warned on Tuesday.

Desalination, the filtering and evaporation of sea water, is very energy-intensive and involves significant emissions of greenhouse gases that scientists say are a factor in the shrinking supplies of freshwater, the Swiss-based group said." (Reuters)

"Sifting the Garbage for a Green Polymer" - "Carbon dioxide. Orange peels. Chicken feathers. Olive oil. Potato peels. E. coli bacteria. It is as if chemists have gone Dumpster diving in their hunt to make biodegradable, sustainable and renewable plastics. Most bioplastics are made from plants like corn, soy, sugar cane and switch grass, but scientists have recently turned to trash in an effort to make so-called green polymers, essentially plastics from garbage." (New York Times)

"More Information Confirms What You Already Know" - "A truism among scientists and technologists is that the more the public understands what they do, the more the public will support their activities. The basic idea is that the more people know about science, the more they will love it. However, with regard to nanotechnology, new research published by the Cultural Cognition Project at the Yale Law School casts some doubt on the sunny premise that more information leads to more acceptance." (Ronald Bailey, Reason)

"Researchers create mutant midget trees through genetic modification" - "Researchers have [used] genetic modification to manipulate the growth in height of trees, a development that could lead to miniature trees and a variety of new ornamental plants, reports Oregon State University. “From a science perspective, this is a very interesting accomplishment and there’s no doubt it could be made to work,” said Steven Strauss, a professor of forest science at OSU." (mongabay.com)

"Soya king changes face of pampas" - "The GM crop has saved Argentina's economy - but now threatens the survival of its forests" (The Observer)

June 18, 2007

"Thank you!" - "Junkfood Science was just listed among The World's Top Blogs on Health and Medicine by Healthcare 100.

This morning it's listed number 14!

In the world. Simply mindboggling.

Thank you, dear readers. The wonderful letters I get each day, many that bring me to tears, have helped to keep me going and to know that people really do appreciate and need a source for the straight scoop. But I never realized just how many of you were reading!" (Junkfood Science)

"Heart healthy diets — Part two of the American Heart Association’s new Guidelines for Women" - "Last month, the American Heart Association released its new Evidence-based Guidelines for Cardiovascular Disease Prevention in Women. In a dramatic move, they had made their secondary management recommendations, formerly used for high cardiac risk patients, applicable to all women, as being necessary for the primary prevention of heart disease and prevention of premature deaths." (Junkfood Science)

"When food fears and healthy eating beliefs grow to an extreme" - "No article will probably be more upsetting to read than this one. It examples what can happen from unsound fears — about obesity; foods and especially “processed” foods, sugars, and fats; chemicals, toxins, and modern medicine — and staunch beliefs in healthy eating and alternative modalities. While this is an extreme example, it deserves our attention because variations of such beliefs and fears are so common across this country and wrecking havoc on the health and wellbeing of countless children and young people, but aren't always recognized. Nutrition scientists, medical professionals and eating disorder experts will find most unsettling that even when confronted with this tragic case, popular fears and myths about food and obesity continued to be voiced." (Junkfood Science)

"Processed foods aren’t real food" - "Processed foods aren’t healthy to eat because everybody knows that they’re bad for us — they’re junk food and so unhealthy they must banned from school lunchrooms to protect children.... or so goes popular wisdom.

But what are processed foods?" (Junkfood Science)

"News or advertising? Or, why haven't we seen Alli Poopy Pants?" - "Have you ever seen so much breathless news reporting lately? It seems every half hour we're hearing about the new over-the-counter diet pill, Alli. You’d think a cure for cancer had been discovered." (Junkfood Science)

"Reader feedback and reactions" - "The new guidelines for the clinical management of fat children recently released by the government and AMA has resulted in overwhelmingly negative responses from parents and the public — but silence from medical and health professionals and media." (Junkfood Science)

"Alarming rise in food allergies" - "THE number of preschoolers with potentially life-threatening food allergies has soared fivefold in a decade, but specialists cannot explain why. There has been a sevenfold increase in the most serious type of reaction, anaphylaxis, an immediate, often violent, whole-body response which requires urgent medical treatment. This has risen particularly among children under five." (Sydney Morning Herald)

"Get Shrunk at Your Own Risk" - "June 18, 2007 issue - No one bats an eye when a drug for a severe mental illness such as schizophrenia or depression causes serious side effects such as nausea, weight gain, blurred vision or a vanishing libido. But what few patients seeking psychotherapy know is that talking can be dangerous, too—and therapists have not exactly rushed to tell them so." (Sharon Begley, Newsweek)

Uh-huh... "Recycling is not enough -- we need to consume less" - "Recycling rates have risen, and the UK is on schedule to meet EU targets, but the key to dealing with our escalating waste problem lies in changing our buying habits and our attitudes to consumption, according to the authors of a new Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) publication." (Economic & Social Research Council)

"Environmental Activists Get Under Your Sink" - "Environmental activists in a handful of states are about to remove the phosphate lurking under your sink. Chances are the dishwasher detergent you stow there now is one of the leading name brands-- Procter & Gamble's Cascade or Reckitt Benckiser's Electrasol. Both contain phosphates.

But the big-name manufacturers are racing to develop and market new, phosphate-free or "P-Nil" products by July 1, 2010." (Ashlea Ebeling, Forbes)

"Green and communist propaganda: comparison" - "Those readers who haven't lived in a totalitarian system may have problems to understand why the rest of us finds the structure of the environmentalist propaganda almost identical to the structure of the communist propaganda. To fix this problem, let me translate the official response to Charter 77, the pro-democracy statement penned by Václav Havel. You can compare it e.g. with DeSmogBlog's new defamatory pages against 61 of the "climate change deniers"." (The Reference Frame)

"Bias at the Beeb - official" - "There are some things you do not need an official report to tell you - that John Prescott thinks he is a babe magnet, that President Mugabe is not entirely in favour of white farmers and that Al-Qaeda takes a pretty dim view of the West. The report commissioned by the BBC into itself concluded with something equally blindingly obvious. It said that the organisation is institutionally biased and especially gullible to the blandishments of politically driven celebrities, such as Bono and Bob Geldof. Almost anyone in Britain could have told the BBC that for free, but maybe it’s better to have it in an official report." (Sunday Times)

"Supporters Defend Gore Climate Concerts" - "London  - British environmental groups ranging from Friends of the Earth to Surfers Against Sewage are coming out full force behind a series of concerts being sponsored by Al Gore next month.

On July 7, the "Live Earth" charity concerts will be held simultaneously over a 24 hour period on seven continents. Profits are going to a new foundation set up by the former vice president, aimed at combating "global warming."

The more than 100 participating acts include multimillionaire stars such as Madonna and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, musicians who are not particularly known for what green activists call "carbon neutral" lifestyles.

Critics have labeled the concerts "private jets for climate change," and Bob Geldof, the musician who organized the trendsetting original Live Aid famine relief concerts in 1985, has criticized the Gore event as lacking purpose, calling it "just an enormous pop concert." (CNSNews.com)

"A lot of hot air?" - "The decision by ABC TV to show a shortened version of the Great Global Warming Swindle documentary, which challenges the majority view that global warming is primarily caused by human activity, has produced angry responses in various quarters. There is clearly an attempt to discredit the documentary even before it is shown." (William Kininmonth, The Age)

"On the Fundamental Defect in the IPCC’s Approach to Global Warming Research by Syun-Ichi Akasofu" - "The purpose of this note is to point out that the method of study adopted by the International Panel of Climate Change (IPCC) is fundamentally flawed, resulting in a baseless conclusion:" (Climate science)

"World climate predictors right only half the time" - "The open admission by a climate scientist of the New Zealand National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA), Dr Jim Renwick, that his organisation achieves only 50 per cent accuracy in its climate forecasts, and that this is as good as any other forecaster around the world, should be a wake-up call for world political leaders," said Rear Admiral Jack Welch, chairman of the New Zealand Climate Science Coalition.

Yesterday the coalition published an analysis of seasonal climate predictions by NIWA over the past five years which found that the overall accuracy of the predictions was just 48 per cent.

Defending the Niwa record, Dr Renwick said his organisation was doing as well as any other weather forecaster around the world. He was quoted by the country's leading newspaper, the New Zealand Herald as saying: "Climate prediction is hard, half of the variability in the climate system is not predictable, so we don't expect to do terrifically well." Later on New Zealand radio, Dr Renwick said: "The weather is not predictable beyond a week or two."

Admiral Welch said that these statements warrant immediate attention by governments around the world." (Press Release: New Zealand Climate Science Coalition)

"Global warming settled science? - commentary" - "If your child attends a government school, he or she is being taught the world is heading toward catastrophe because of global warming caused by human activity on the planet and resulting in increased levels of carbon dioxide." (BBJ)

"Helping along global warming" - "Remember in January when the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and its good friends in media trumpeted that 2006 was the warmest year on record for the contiguous United States?" (Bill Steigerwald, Tribune-Review)

Eye-roller du jour: "Global warming future: Drought, wildfire, floods, pestilence" - "Top climate scientists offered Western governors an assessment on the impacts of global warming that sounded like something out of the Old Testament: drought, wildfire, floods and pestilence.

More importantly, the governors themselves put to rest any remaining doubt on a human role in the problem.

"Are there any respected scientific organizations left that dispute what you are saying?" asked Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr., adding, "and you can't say the White House and Congress."

"Where there is skepticism, it is coming from an increasingly small number of individuals who have some kind of ax to grind," of a moral or religious point of view, said Christopher Field, director of global ecology at the Carnegie Institution of Washington. "There is not a reputable organization in the world that opposes the core conclusions." (Scripps News)

II: "Mediterranean to Get More Deadly Hot Days - Study" - "WASHINGTON - Deadly heat waves around the Mediterranean, like those that killed some 18,000 people in 2003, could become the norm this century if current trends in greenhouse emissions continue, researchers reported on Friday." (Reuters)

Surprised it took them this long: "Climate change partly to blame for Darfur - UN head" - "Climate change is partly to blame for the conflict in Sudan's Darfur region, where droughts have provoked fighting over water sources, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon claims." (Belfast Telegraph) | A Climate Culprit In Darfur (Ban Ki Moon, Washington Post)

"Deeper Into the Dustbin of Silly Science: The Continuing Collapse of the Global Warming Hypothesis" - "The recent flood of scientific papers and books being published undermine the global warming hypothesis. See for example (http://tinyurl.com/34jx2m). The more carefully the pillars of the hypothesis are examined the more implausible it becomes. The man-made global warming hypothesis is failing scientific scrutiny." (Michael R. Fox, Hawaii Reporter

"Slashing and Warming" - "Buried in the final communiqué issued at the recent Group of 8 summit in Germany was an important and overdue pledge to help poorer nations reduce the global warming emissions caused by the slashing and burning of their tropical forests.

One of the glaring weaknesses in the 1997 Kyoto Accord was its failure to address deforestation, which now amounts to an astonishing 50 million acres a year. Because it releases huge quantities of carbon stored in trees, deforestation contributes at least 20 percent of all carbon emissions, quite apart from the toll it takes on plant and animal life and biodiversity generally. That’s more carbon dioxide than all of the world’s cars and trucks produce." (New York Times)

Great! Generally speaking I love trees and the critters found in wilderness areas but the reasoning here is dead flat wrong. Firstly, carbon constraint cannot and will not function as any kind of predictable global temperature/climate control. Secondly, wilderness doesn't help developing regions -- they need to develop and enrich their societies to afford health care, education and all the first world 'necessities'.

"Home on the Rainforest" - "DEEP within Madagascar, more than 1,300 square miles of rainforest continue to breathe in carbon dioxide and breathe out oxygen every day, helping to keep the planet cool. That may not seem like a big achievement for a bunch of trees, but elsewhere around the world tropical forests like this one are being felled to make way for timber and mining operations, cattle ranches and, increasingly, sugar and palm oil plantations to fuel the world’s growing thirst for ethanol." (New York Times)

Yes, yes, and at night they take oxygen and release carbon dioxide -- so? Worse, old growth forests release as much carbon as the growing canopy captures due to core rot and expired leaf/plant decay (it goes under the snappy term of 'nutrient recycling'). The Greenies' catchy 'lungs of the planet' labeling is nothing but fanciful twaddle.

Same recycled nonsense: "Plea to stop atolls sinking into Pacific" - "A crusading campaigner for the Pacific state of Tuvalu has issued a stark warning to Britain about the devastating effect that global warming will have on the islands." (London Independent) | The truth - Tuvalu is not sinking

For someone alleged to study the issue, Anna DeGaborik is remarkably ill-informed: "Mosquito Borne Diseases: The Dangerous Link Between Mosquitoes and Global Warming" - "The rise of many infectious diseases and other threats to human health depends in large part on the local climate. Global warming, the progressive and gradual warming of the earth's surface temperature, is the most worrisome effect of climate change. Each year, in a number of places across the world, drought and high temperatures negatively affect water supplies and crops. In addition, high temperatures have increased the number of reported illnesses and deaths among humans." (American Chronicle)

"A Meeting Announcement On A Symposium “Improving Commerce and Reducing Deaths and Injuries through Innovative, Weather-Related R&D And Applications for the Surface Transportation System”" - "Dr. Renee A. McPherson Associate Director of the Oklahoma Climatological Survey alerted me to this meeting, which fits into the recommendation on Climate Science that we need to better recognize and reduce our vulnerability to weather and climate threats." (Climate Science)

Oh boy... "'Arctic Tale' Puts Faces to Global-Warming Threat" - "SILVER SPRING, Md. - A new movie showing young polar bears and walruses struggling toward adulthood in a melting Arctic puts a pair of charismatic faces on the global warming threat." (Reuters)

"Scientists say climate change isn’t melting snow cap on Kilimanjaro" - "SEATTLE — The shrinking snow cap atop Mount Kilimanjaro has become an icon of global warming.

Pictures of the African peak, which has lost 90 percent of its ice cover, were featured in Al Gore’s documentary, “An Inconvenient Truth.” Greenpeace activists once held a satellite news conference on the summit to sway participants in an international climate conference.

But most scientists who study Kilimanjaro’s glaciers have long been uneasy with the volcano’s poster-child status. Yes, ice cover has shrunk by 90 percent, they say. But no, the buildup of greenhouse gases from cars, power plants and factories is not to blame." (Seattle Times)

"A weather station near glacier to study global warming" - "For the first time, an Indian weather station is being set up near a Himalayan glacier to study the impact of climate change and provide weather details and warnings to mountaineers." (IANS)

"Climate change cost impossible to predict" - "The fur's going to fly now. This week, well-known economist Robert Mendelsohn of Yale University's School of Forestry and Environmental Studies released a study entitled, "Dynamic Forecasts of the Sectoral Impacts of Climate Change," that concludes that Canada, Russia, Greenland and other northern climate countries will experience a net benefit from global warming." (Michael Campbell, Vancouver Sun)

"FEATURE-Global warming to multiply world's refugee burden" - "BEIRUT, June 18 - If rising sea levels force the people of the Maldive Islands to seek new homes, who will look after them in a world already turning warier of refugees?

The daunting prospect of mass population movements set off by climate change and environmental disasters poses an imminent new challenge that no one has yet figured out how to meet.

People displaced by global warming -- the Christian Aid agency has predicted there will be one billion by 2050 -- could dwarf the nearly 10 million refugees and almost 25 million internally displaced people already fleeing wars and oppression." (Reuters)

All this based on the output of models with no known prognostic value.

"Caterpillar CEO Confronted at Company Stockholder Meeting for Joining Environmentalist Lobbying Group" - "Under Questioning, CEO Admits Firm Didn't Do a Cost-Benefit Analysis Before Caterpillar Joined Lobbying Effort to Regulate CO2

Washington, D.C. - The National Center for Public Policy Research and the Project 21 black leadership network challenged senior Caterpillar, Inc. officials at the company's stockholder meeting Wednesday, asking them to explain Caterpillar's decision to join the United States Climate Action Partnership (USCAP), which is lobbying for caps on carbon dioxide emissions.

USCAP's goal of achieving mandatory federal restrictions on carbon dioxide emissions would drive up the cost of energy and disproportionately harm low income people, Caterpillar's customers, and shareholders." (Press Release)

Oops! "New York's Bloomberg Takes SUV to Green Car Event" - "NEW YORK - It's not easy going green. Just ask New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. He arrived at a green car initiative on Thursday at the American Museum of Natural History in a small motorcade of fuel-guzzling sport utility vehicles." (Reuters)

"The Terminator gets a life" - "The Terminator, once the great muscle-bound hope of Republicans and the tough-talking scourge of girly men everywhere, is back once more in the embrace of the mainstream media. And of a lot of Democrats, too. There are second acts in California politics after all.

The new Arnold Schwarzenegger hasn't had sex-change surgery, exactly, but he's definitely a newly sculptured man. The identity of the sculptor is a secret -- sculptors, like surgeons, keep a discreet profile -- but she looks a lot like a Kennedy named Maria." (Washington Times)

"Two men unduly called intrepid: Time mag dumbs down heroism" - "In an age when Fox News is a ratings juggernaut and Katie Couric is ratings roadkill, it seems almost antique to talk about liberal media bias. But it’s still out there, my friends. Just look at the hilarious press release masquerading as a news story in Time magazine. With a picture of California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg looking like henchmen from Murder Inc., Time proclaims these pols “The New Action Heroes.”

And why are the Munchkin Mayor and the glandular Governator so heroic? Time’s Michael Grunwald comes close to sounding like a teenage girl talking about Justin Timberlake. Bloomberg and Schwarzenegger are doing “big things,” he tells us. “Specifically, they’re doing big things that Washington has failed to do.” Schwarzenegger and Bloomberg have “got better things to do than bicker and posture.”

And what are these better things? Well, they’re both fighting global warming, natch. And Arnold’s fighting for embryo-destroying stem cell research while Bloomberg, Grunwald gushes, has implemented “America’s most draconian smoking ban and the first big-city trans-fat ban.”

Heroes indeed!" (Jonah Goldberg, Boston Herald)

"A calculator to help save the planet" - "An official calculator that enables every person in Britain to work out how much they are contributing to global warming will be launched by the government this week. The special website will calculate how people's home heating, appliances and personal transport add to the carbon emissions blamed for causing climate change." (The Observer)

  Wonder if it includes respiration?

"Calculator taken off ministry website" - "Herald readers who rushed to calculate their carbon footprint using a calculator described in the launch of the new green pages were puzzled they could not access the link on the Ministry for the Environment website.

The calculator had been taken offline after feedback from users who had similar experiences to the Herald reporter who discovered discrepancies like being punished for not using public transport when in fact she walked to work." (New Zealand Herald)

"Expert View: If we're as green as we claim, the airlines will suffer" - "Are British consumers beginning to change their buying habits as a result of concerns about climate change? A recent barrage of initiatives suggests the big retailers think so." (London Independent)

"Carbon offsetting could save the world, or just ease your conscience" - "OTTAWA - With the world scrambling to combat global warming, one segment of the green movement offering one of the most innovative approaches to saving the planet is still fighting for acceptance - not from the public, but from environmentalists.

Carbon offsetting groups have been around for more than a decade, but are still experiencing growing pains ranging from bad management, bad luck and, possibly most damaging, suspicion from the people who should be their biggest boosters." (CP)

Whoa! And The Guardian printed it: "The inconvenient truth about the carbon offset industry" - "In the concluding part of a major investigation, Nick Davies shows how greenhouse gas credits do little or nothing to combat global warming." (The Guardian)

"EU's carbon trade 'set to fail'" - "The EU's carbon trading scheme - deemed a key to tackling climate change - is set to 'fail' yet again, says the WWF.

The European Trading Scheme (ETS) was launched in 2005 to cut carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, but its success was limited, partly due to lax limits. The wildlife charity is worried that the ETS' next phase will also 'fail to deliver' significant emissions cuts. Failure to cut carbon dioxide levels could cause irreversibly damaging climate change, scientists fear." (BBJ)

"Hot Air is Not Enough: As global warming flummoxes politicians, the air engineers will rise" - "June 25, 2007 issue - President George W. Bush averted a nasty rift when he agreed in the final hours of the recent G8 summit to "consider seriously" the need to halve the world's emissions of global-warming gases by 2050. Canada, the European Union and Japan had already embraced that goal, leaving America the dirty stand-out. The deeper truth is that these eight industrial countries control only part of the world's emissions, and the industrial activities that cause emissions are slow to change. Coal will be the hardest to tame because it is so cheap and abundant. Many coal-power plants coming online today will still be in service by 2050, and advanced plants that store effluent safely underground won't be used widely for many more decades. The geopolitical hurdles are also high. The plan introduced with much fanfare earlier this month by China, which next year will become the world's top emitter of greenhouse gases, contains nothing beyond what Beijing already had in place. The world, therefore, is in for some warming.

Pessimism about stopping global warming is leading some scientists to wonder out loud if it is possible through "geoengineering" to force the Earth to cool. The idea is not entirely new and is fraught with dangers, but it is likely to get more attention in coming years." (David G. Victor, Newsweek International)

"Norway, UK Subsea CO2 Storage Plans Gain Momentum" - "OSLO - Britain and Norway said on Friday their efforts to bury carbon dioxide emissions under the North Sea have gained momentum, although progress is hampered by rules on marine waste dumping and EU limits on state aid." (Reuters)

"Researchers Examine Carbon Capture and Storage to Combat Global Warming" - "While solar power and hybrid cars have become popular symbols of green technology, Stanford researchers are exploring another path for cutting emissions of carbon dioxide, the leading greenhouse gas that causes global warming.

Carbon capture and storage, also called carbon sequestration, traps carbon dioxide after it is produced and injects it underground. The gas never enters the atmosphere. The practice could transform heavy carbon spewers, such as coal power plants, into relatively clean machines with regard to global warming." (CCNews)

"Russia Plans to Start Trading Kyoto Quotas in 2008" - "MOSCOW - Russia plans to start trading its greenhouse emission quotas in 2008 once it has met all eligibility requirements needed to implement the Kyoto mechanisms, a senior Russian official said on Friday." (Reuters)

"Energy Legislation Aims To Curb Nation's Reliance On Foreign Oil" - "Congress is moving toward approving a sweeping energy bill this week that will require carmakers to drive up fuel economy of their vehicles and force the power industry to switch over to alternative energy sources.

Key senators are optimistic they will have the bill wrapped up by Friday, but divisions over key issues remain and special interest groups and affected industries have swarmed Congress with lobbyists and advocates." (IBD)

"City considers road tolls in emission-cutting plan" - "Tolls on Toronto-area highways, a ban on gas-powered lawnmowers and leaf blowers, a requirement for hybrid taxis and a massive retrofit of city buildings are all needed to slash greenhouse gas emissions in Canada's biggest city, according to a Toronto city report." (Toronto Star)

"Tory greenhouse-gas target to hit jobs" - "THE head of the main union representing steelworkers has accused Welsh Conservative Assembly leader Nick Bourne of endangering jobs in the steel industry by backing a 3% carbon dioxide emission reduction target for the National Assembly." (Western Mail)

"Progress on preventing blackouts" - "Mandatory rules governing the reliability of the US power grid go into effect Monday." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"China Coal Capacity Tops Goal; Energy-Saving in Doubt" - "BEIJING - China's coal production capacity will exceed its output target by at least 16 percent by 2010, a development that would raise doubts about Beijing's energy-efficiency plans, state media reported." (Reuters)

"Global Coal Rush Raises Clean Energy Stakes" - "LONDON - A global scramble for coal has made deployment of clean energy more urgent, says Robert Socolow, a Princeton University professor known for his blueprint for a more climate-friendly energy supply." (Reuters)

"Coal 'naivety' panned by BHP boss" - "ANY move to curtail climate change by restricting coal consumption would be based on a "naive" assumption, BHP Billiton chief executive Chip Goodyear has warned. Before the release of the global miner's long-awaited climate change policy today, Mr Goodyear said it was necessary to develop technology-based solutions that avoided impeding economic growth." (The Australian)

"From Peak Oil To Dark Age?" - "With global oil production virtually stalled in recent years, controversial predictions that the world is fast approaching maximum petroleum output are looking a bit less controversial. At first blush, those concerned about global warming should be delighted. After all, what better way to prod the move toward carbon-free, climate-friendly alternative energy?" (Eugene Linden, Business Week)

"Debate heats up in US over coal fuel for cars" - "A fiery debate has been rekindled in Washington as US lawmakers mull proposed incentives to produce diesel fuel from coal. Backers of coal-based liquid fuels say they can help reduce US dependence on imported oil. Critics contend the use of coal in any form would lead to increased greenhouse gas emissions and other harmful environmental effects." (AFP)

"Democrats Press Plan to Reverse Energy Taxes" - "WASHINGTON, June 16 — Senate Democrats are seeking a major reversal of energy tax policies that would take billions of dollars in tax breaks and other benefits from the oil industry to underwrite renewable fuels. The tax increases would reverse incentives passed as recently as three years ago to increase domestic exploration and production of oil and gas. The change reflects a shift from the Republican focus on expanding oil production to the Democratic concern about reducing global warming." (New York Times)

"State revises fuel rules to allow more ethanol" - "The California Air Resources Board on Thursday approved revisions to the state's rules on formulating gasoline and other fuels to allow refineries to blend in more ethanol.

The revision was intended to make it easier for them to meet the state's new targets for clean-burning fuels that pump less carbon into the atmosphere by using ethanol, an alcohol made from renewable resources such as grain and, potentially, agricultural waste." (Sacramento Business Journal)

"Corn-Based Ethanol: A Case Study in the Law of Unintended Consequences" - "A boom in ethanol production is taking place today for variety of reasons. Undoubtedly, the most significant factor is government support and subsidies for biofuel production. The rationale for subsiding biofuels arises from a convergence of security, environmental, and nationalistic concerns, which has led policy makers to endorse stiffer mandates and increased subsidies." (Fran Smith, CEI)

"Energy Independence: The Solutions Limousine Liberals Don’t Want You to Hear" - "Contrary to what politicians have been spouting recently, American energy independence can be accomplished with very simple solutions. These solutions are so obvious, in fact, that it begs the question why these policy modifications have not been implemented. In reality, the reason these changes haven’t been implemented has a straightforward answer as well: limousine liberals do not “really” want energy independence." (Copious Dissent)

"Pollution tax will make the cost of driving soar" - "Britain's 40 million motorists face a new 'green' stealth tax that will send petrol prices soaring and force up the cost of a car by thousands of pounds.

The pay-as-you-pollute plan by the EU and Government will add a new charge, called a 'carbon price'.

The aim is to help the country hit strict pollution targets by reducing the amount of carbon dioxide - the so-called greenhouse gas blamed for global warming - pumped out by cars and lorries." (Daily Mail)

"Boeing Shifts Green Pressure Onto Engine Makers" - "PARIS - The head of Boeing Co. commercial aircraft unit on Sunday backed a call by rival Airbus to work closely on producing more environmentally friendly planes, but said real progress was the responsibility of jet engine makers, rather than plane builders." (Reuters)

"'Scapegoat' claim over plane CO2" - "Air transport is being used as a scapegoat for global warming, a group for UK commercial pilots has claimed. The British Airline Pilots' Association (Balpa) says "half truths and untruths" have made passengers feel guilty about taking a flight." (BBC)

"Ottawa OKs burial of nuclear waste" - "OTTAWA — The federal government has given approval in principle for the underground disposal of nuclear waste, long a contentious issue for environmentalists. But Natural Resources Minister Gary Lunn says it will take years of consultations to choose a site, and decades to actually deposit the waste. "This is just the beginning of quite a long process. It will be a number of years before there is anything further to announce," Lunn said Thursday outside the House of Commons." (Canadian Press)

"The kapok connection -- Study explains rainforest similarities" - "Celebrated in Buddhist temples and cultivated for its wood and cottony fibers, the kapok tree now is upsetting an idea that biologists have clung to for decades: the notion that African and South American rainforests are similar because the continents were connected 96 million years ago." (NSF)

"Pesticides suspected in die-off of bees" - "LEWISBURG, PA. — Scientists investigating a mysterious ailment that has killed many of the nation's honeybees are concentrating on pesticides and microorganisms as possible causes of the disorder, and some beekeepers are refusing to place their hives near chemically treated fields." (AP)

"Alleged GM ingredients in food under probe" - "The Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) said on Friday that it is investigating allegations that food products of two foreign firms contain genetically-modified (GM) ingredients." (Xinhua)

"Monsanto coming out with drought-tolerant GM cotton, maize" - "Mumbai, June. 17: US biotech major Monsanto, which had earlier launched insect-resistant genetically modified BT cotton, plans to soon come out with drought-tolerant GM maize and cotton seeds, a senior company official said." (PTI)

"Corn boom fuels Monsanto's profit: GM-seed giant brightens forecast; stock trades at record high" - "Monsanto Co., the world's biggest seed producer, boosted its profit forecast for fiscal 2007 as rising demand for ethanol and animal feed led to a surge in U.S. corn planting. The shares rose to a record." (Bloomberg News)

"Lack of funds, regulation affect development of ‘Golden rice’" - "CHENNAI, JUN 17: Perceived risks, extreme precautionary regulations and hypothetical risks from genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and poor public sector funding are delaying the development of the “Golden rice” into a commercial reality, according to one of its creators, Ingo Potrykus, Emeritus Professor of Plant Sciences at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zürich." (Financial Express)

June 15, 2007

"Military Suicide Study Mystery" - "Researchers and the media did their best this week to scare military personnel and their families with the widely reported headline, “Military Service Doubles Suicide Risk.” (Steven Milloy, FoxNews.com)

"Science is not a democracy" - "Scientists years ago dismissed the alleged causal link between childhood vaccinations and autism. But a large and vocal group of advocates are nonetheless convinced there is a cause-and-effect relationship. For them and their lawyers, science is irrelevant. Their last hope for vindication: a court of law that they hope might establish -- legally, not scientifically -- that vaccines do indeed pose a risk of autism and other ailments." (Gilbert Ross, Washington Post)

"Needed: Investigative Reporters to Expose Those Allowing Thousands to Die" - "Sam Zaramba, in a subscription-only op-ed column in Tuesday's Wall Street Journal, gives the next Woodward or Bernstein a hot story to follow up on:" (Tom Blumer, News Busters)

"Uganda Anti-DDT Rally Video: Lukyamuzi Spreads Lies, Encourages Violence" - "This video of Ken Lukyamuzi, a former Ugandan Minister of Parliament, highlights the ongoing need for informed, constructive advocacy on the integrated approach to malaria control, indoor residual spraying, and DDT. Spreading lies and inciting violence hurts malaria control and helps no one." (AFM)

"Quackbuster causes too much flak for university" - "I've always said you'd get a lot more kids interested in science if you told them it involves fighting - which of course it does. This week, for example, Professor David Colquhoun FRS - one of the most eminent scientists in the UK - has been forced to remove his quackbusting blog from the UCL servers where it has lived for many years, after complaints from disgruntled alternative therapists." (Ben Goldacre, The Guardian)

"UK: Take obese children from parents, say doctors" - "Severely overweight children should be taken from their parents and put into care, doctors said yesterday as it emerged that obesity had been a factor in at least 20 child protection cases in the past year." (London Telegraph)

"Drug Regulation: Has the Worst Become the Norm?" - "A sad litany of new examples suggests the FDA has lost its ability to reason about risk." (Henry I. Miller, The American)

Another eye-roller: "Eco-tourism: It's not easy being green" - "Not long ago, the term eco-tourism was greeted with a "huh?" Now it's more likely to be met with a tale about one's own eco-adventures.

Eco-tourism – generally defined as "responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the welfare of local people"– is booming. The International Eco-tourism Society (TIES) estimates that eco-tourism is growing globally three times faster than the tourism industry as a whole. But the term is often misunderstood, shorthand for any trip that's off the beaten track.

What's more, eco-tourism is increasingly coming under fire, blamed for everything from stressed-out penguins to eco-tour operators battling over the Cost Rican rain forest. And though three- quarters of travellers, according to National Geographic Traveler magazine, are concerned about the environment of the places they visit, it's less clear whether this translates into action." (Toronto Star)

Hmm... " Polar bears in Manitoba are coping in October and November with upwards of 20,000 tourists, desperate for a glimpse of the white giants. It's the time of year when the animals should be resting. Instead, the bears go on alert any time a vehicle comes by, using up valuable fat stores, critical for hunting and defending themselves later in the year. "

However, Kelsey Eliasson of Churchill, Manitoba, tells it slightly differently: 7-8000 tourists, over five weeks - bears are just coming out of their summer 'walking hibernation' and impact is pretty minimal in Churchill. Not to mention, Churchill's season only gets the periphery of the population and the strongest, healthiest bears stay east of Churchill out along the coast of Hudson Bay. The study that she is quoting classifies 'alert' as lifting their head. The amount of disturbance caused is relatively small in the big picture. -- h/t Dennis A.

"Rescuing indigenous people from misanthropic greenies" - "THE aspirations of indigenous people in remote Australia to re-establish a real economy underpinning the sustainability of their society are at odds with the vision of urban-based conservation organisations such as the Wilderness Society (writes Noel Pearson). The confrontation that has emerged between the advocates of land rights in Cape York and those who advocate for so-called wilderness may be the start of a sharpening clash of values." (The Australian)

"Turning a buck on weather" - "Once the realm of Fortune 500 companies, weather derivatives are being offering to smaller businesses, including iTravel2000, which has a $100 million bet with weather risk management start-up WeatherBill." (Toronto Star)

"How companies are turning climate to their advantage" - "Climate change, so long ignored or even denied, can no longer be disregarded, and is forcing companies throughout all sectors to re-evaluate their practices. And as with all 'obstacles', companies have started using climate change as a vehicle to promote what they do best: make business." (Food Navogator)

"Russia eyes 700-million-euro Kyoto windfall" - "MOSCOW - Russia’s electricity monopoly United Energy Systems hopes to attract investment worth 700 million euros under the Kyoto Protocol to combat global warming, CEO Anatoly Chubais said on Thursday." (AFP)

Warmening warbling: "Common bird species in dramatic decline" - "Boston - New data show the populations of some of America's well-known birds in a tailspin, thanks to the one-two punch of habitat fragmentation and, increasingly, global warming." (Mark Clayton, The Christian Science Monitor)

"Arctic Plants Have Adjusted to Climate Changes" - "Many Arctic plant species have readily adjusted to big climate changes, repeatedly re-colonizing the rugged islands of Norway’s remote Svalbard archipelago through 20,000 years of warm and cool spells since the frigid peak of the last ice age, researchers say.

The finding implies that, in the Arctic at least, plants may be able to shift long distances, following the climate conditions for which they are best adapted as those conditions relocate under the influence of human-caused global warming, the researchers and some independent experts said.

Some experts on climate and biology who were not involved with the study said it provided a glimmer of optimism in the face of generally bleak scientific assessments of the vulnerability of ecosystems to the atmospheric buildup of greenhouse gases." (New York Times)

"Generally bleak" assessments only exist because they're the kind that garner ink and grants, their relationship to reality is tenuous, at best.

"G8 agreement on climate change a "disgrace" -Al Gore" - "MILAN, June 14 - Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore denounced a deal by world leaders on curbing greenhouse gases as "a disgrace disguised as an achievement", saying on Thursday the agreement struck last week was insufficient." (Reuters)

"Gore says he wants to push the environment to the forefront of the 2008 US presidential race" - "MILAN, Italy: Al Gore, the former U.S. vice president-turned-environmentalist, said Thursday that he hoped to push the environmental agenda to the forefront of the 2008 U.S. presidential election — but probably not as a candidate." (Associated Press)

Oh boy... "Wetter north only temporary: Flannery" - "Australia should forget about moving people and agriculture to the country's north because the increased rainfall there won't last, scientist Tim Flannery says.

The Australian of the Year says people instead should learn to live in a permanently drier climate.

"Computer models indicate that the increased rainfall is most likely caused by the Asian haze, which has pushed the monsoon south," Professor Flannery wrote in the latest issue of New Scientist magazine.

"This means that as Asia cleans up its air, Australia is likely to lose its northern rainfall." (AAP)

... Flannery should do a search on Kakadu or maybe Art Linklater, the Humpty Doo Rice Project, Fogg Dam and various other 1960s-era projects -- Australia has a wet 'top end' and has done so for a long time. This has nothing to do with the Asian Brown Cloud and everything to do with being in the wet tropics. Flannery is a gibbering nitwit and getting worse by the day.

"Parker 2006: An Urban Myth?" - "If you are not a climate scientist (or a realclimate reader), you would almost certainly believe, from your own experience, that cities are warmer than the surrounding countryside - the “urban heat island”. From that, it’s easy to conclude that as cities become bigger and as towns become cities and villages become towns, that there is a widespread impact on urban records from changes in landscape, which have to be considered before you can back out what potion is due to increased GHG." (Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit)

"So much research, so little temperature analysis" - "Do you not think it strange, that so much research has gone into the effects of increased temperatures at night, when, on this blog, I have done greater analysis of temperatures at night then in any scientific literature?" (Gust of Hot Air)

"The Sun is all that seems to matter" - "Initial results by combining a couple of stations in south east Queensland were looking a little bizarre, so I decided to view both Amberley and Cape Morton separately." (Gust of Hot Air)

"Dropping Ice Age scenario, researchers discard Gulf Stream catastrophe scenario" - "TORSHAVN, Faeroe Islands - From the deck of a research ship moored in these gusty north Atlantic islands, workers are offloading three bright orange buoys whose sonar devices will help Bogi Hansen fill more gaps in an intriguing twist on climate change forecasts.

For the past year, the Faeroese scientist's sonar has been pinging the Gulf Stream, the warm ocean current that has kept this subpolar archipelago unfrozen for centuries. His findings are of big interest because they contradict one of the most catastrophic predictions linked to global warming: that Arctic melting will strangle the Gulf Stream, thrusting Europe into a new Ice Age." (AP)

In that poor virtual world, again: "Reduced greenhouse gas emissions required to avoid dangerous increases in heat stress" - "WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- A study led by a Purdue University researcher projects a 200 percent to 500 percent increase in the number of dangerously hot days in the Mediterranean by the end of the 21st century if the current rate of greenhouse gas emissions continues. The study found France would be subjected to the largest projected increase of high-temperature extremes.

The study also showed a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions could reduce the intensification of dangerously hot days projected in the scenario by up to 50 percent." (Purdue University)

"Where’s the Beef (Heat)?" (.pdf) - "Because of a report that was blogged by Joe Bastardi of Accuweather that indicated no record daily June highs for Iowa were in recent decades, we took a look for ourselves at the Des Moines records and look what we found for number of record highs by decade for June and July.

It is very clear that the 1930s stand out with a total of 33 days during the two month period. Both the 1910s and 1950s had 7 days. 1988 made an impressive showing in June with 5 days. July was hot that year but 1930s were hotter. There were more records set in the 1880s (4) than in the last 20 years (0). For Des Moines, Iowa at least record daily June and July highs show no propensity for increasing in this so-called global warming era." (Joe D’Aleo, Icecap)

"Could Some Win With Global Warming?" - "GHENT, N.Y. -- It's not in Al Gore's PowerPoint presentation, but there are some upsides to global warming." (Associated Press)

"Global warming's Keystone Kops" - "Congress may not yet reflect the political will to tackle climate change. It's hung up on old-style politics." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"China to quantify greenhouse gas goals?" - "China will hold down per-capita volumes of greenhouse gases causing global warming and is studying how to spell out domestic emissions goals, officials said Thursday, seeking to stress cooperation on the issue." (Reuters)

Hmm... "EU carbon emissions edge down but Spain, Italy now far short of Kyoto aim" - "Overall greenhouse-gas emissions by the European Union (EU) edged downwards in 2005 but rose in Italy and Spain, which are now badly adrift of their pollution-cutting targets under the Kyoto Protocol, according to data released on Thursday." (AFP)

but wait! "BBC Reports EU’s Carbon Trading Scheme Has Actually Increased CO2 Emissions" - "On several occasions I have pointed out how much better foreign media are at presenting reports either skeptical of anthropogenic global warming or addressing the failings in government sanctioned solutions.

Last week, the BBC did a report on the European Union’s carbon trading scheme failing so miserably that CO2 emissions in the region have actually increased since the strategy was implemented." (Noel Sheppard, News Busters)

"UN Bali Meeting Should Map Out New Climate Treaty" - "STOCKHOLM - Environment officials from 28 nations meeting in Sweden agreed on Thursday that December's United Nations climate conference should be used to craft a firm timetable for talks on a pact to replace the Kyoto agreement." (Reuters)

But they should: "Exxon Says it Never Doubted Climate Change Threat" - "LONDON - Oil company Exxon Mobil Corp. never in the past decade doubted the risk from climate change, its global spokesman Kenneth Cohen said on Thursday, in a latest attempt to improve its green credentials." (Reuters)

"Farmers in Global Warming Alarmists' Crosshairs" - "When politicking in farm belt states, global warming alarmists frequently assert that restrictive global warming legislation will benefit farmers. Farmers are told measures taken to address global warming will encourage more ethanol production and induce industry to purchase carbon sequestration credits from farmers engaging in no-till agriculture." (James M. Taylor, Heartland Institute) -- h/t Greenie Watch

"Introducing The Global Warming Diet: ‘Cool Recipes For a Hot Planet’" - "Just when you thought it was safe to have drinks near your computer, the global warming alarmists have created a diet to help you reduce your carbon footprint." (Noel Sheppard, News Busters)

"China's Minimum CO2 Price Puts Off Small Projects" - "SINGAPORE - China's growth as the top spot for projects to cut emissions under the Kyoto Protocol is likely to slow, with rules on a minimum price for credits deterring small projects and keeping the cost of such offsets high." (Reuters)

"New paths to reach green goal" - "China's top science official yesterday sounded an upbeat note about achieving the country's green goals - innovatively. "China is exploring a different way of controlling greenhouse gas (GHS) emissions. We will not follow the Western countries' way of high emissions first and then reduction," Minister of Science and Technology Wan Gang said." (People's Daily)

"Green Goodies: It's payback time for another left-leaning lobby" - "First came Big Labor. Then the tort lawyers. What special interest lobby remains for the Democratic majority to reward for services rendered this past election?

The answer rests in the ecstatic press releases tumbling out of the nation's largest environmental groups, as they oversee the House's pending energy legislation. That is, if "energy" is the right word for West Virginia Rep. Nick Rahall's green-payoff of a bill. Ostensibly the legislation is a rollback of any energy production advances of recent years. But also tucked deep in its heart is an extraordinary new tool to allow environmentalists to lock up private property across the country. Bill presented; bill paid." (Kimberley A Strassel, Wall Street Journal)

<chuckle> "World oil supplies are set to run out faster than expected, warn scientists" - "Scientists challenge major review of global reserves and warn that supplies will start to run out in four years' time." (London Independent)

No need to worry about gorebal warmening then, eh? After all, if we're gonna run out of gas then there's no point fretting over something we can't make happen, right?

"Nuke power 'won't curb global warming'" - "NUCLEAR power would only curb climate change by expanding worldwide at the rate it grew from 1981 to 1990, its busiest decade, and keep up that rate for half a century, a report released in the US said today.

Specifically, that would require adding on average 14 plants each year for the next 50 years, all the while building an average of 7.4 plants to replace those that will be retired, the report by environmental leaders, industry executives and academics said." (Reuters)

"Biofuels Could Lead to Mass Hunger Deaths - UN Envoy" - "GENEVA - Diverting sugar and maize for biofuels could lead to hundreds of thousands of deaths from hunger worldwide, the United Nations' food envoy warned on Thursday." (Reuters)

"Ethanol Group Blames Oil Prices for Costly US Food" - "WASHINGTON/NEW YORK - Blame surging oil and gasoline prices for driving up the cost of US groceries, the ethanol industry said on Thursday, defending itself from charges that the corn price spike was making food more expensive." (Reuters)

"Plastic that grows on trees" - "Scientists took a giant step closer to the biorefinery this week, reporting in the June 15 issue of the journal Science that they have directly converted sugars ubiquitous in nature to an alternative source for those products that make oil so valuable, with very little of the residual impurities that have made the quest so daunting." (Pacific Northwest National Laboratory)

"Farm animal diversity under threat, FAO says" - "The rapid spread of large-scale industrial livestock production focused on a narrow range of breeds is the biggest threat to the world's farm animal diversity, according to a report presented on Thursday to the Commission on Genetic Resources for the UN Food and Agriculture Organization ( FAO)." (People's Daily)

"SAP Founder Builds German Biotech Empire" - "Dietmar Hopp, the founder of German software giant SAP, has a new project on his agenda: biotechnology. With the help of two advisors, Hopp plans to rescue an industry that has fallen into irrelevance in Germany." (Der Spiegel)

"Stand by Science on GMO Foods, EU Trade Chief Says" - "BRUSSELS - It's time for Europe to reassess its scepticism towards genetically modified (GMO) foods and trust scientists who have deemed them safe -- or risk more international lawsuits, the EU trade chief said on Thursday." (Reuters)

"France says will not suspend Monsanto's GMO maize" - "PARIS - France will not ban growing the only genetically modified crop allowed in the country, U.S. biotech giant Monsanto's MON 810 maize, because there is no new element to question it, the Environment Ministry said on Thursday.

Several European Union countries have recently dug in their heels on whether their farmers may grow MON 810 maize, one of Europe's oldest GMO crops." (Reuters)

"Genetically modified carnations 'safe'" - "The first-ever entry on Australia's Genetically Modified Organism (GMO) Register has been approved. Four genetically modified varieties of carnations, first trialled in 1992 and commercially released in 1995, are now considered so safe that those using them do not need a special licence to handle the plants." (AAP)

June 14, 2007

"Tracking the fake malaria drug threat" - "The artesunate family of drugs is, quite simply, the only real weapon mankind has left in the fight against one of its most deadly diseases. Unless drug piracy is defeated, even that last weapon could be taken away." (BBC)

"Profit for the Poorest" - "Filed under: Economic Policy, World Watch A U.S. initiative encourages businesses to see Africa’s poor as an untapped market." (Apoorva Shah, The American)

"Beyond the bias: How media incompetence leads to mass ignorance about the US economy" - "In this exclusive 7-part series, IBD explores the reasons behind the great paradox of a boom now in its sixth year – that despite spectacular gains, most Americans think the economy’s in bad shape and headed for recession.

Media bias has been detected in other studies, but this series raises an additional possibility – media incompetence in analyzing and explaining how the economy and financial markets work.

Installments will cover how the media report on subjects like tax cuts, deficits, trade and stocks, creating myths – and unwarranted fear -- as they go along." (IBD)

Just to annoy the lifestyle police: "'Obesity paradox' seen in range of heart ills" - "NEW YORK - Among men with symptoms of heart disease, those who are obese tend to live longer than their normal-weight counterparts, a new study suggests.

Researchers found that among nearly 6,900 male veterans assessed for symptoms of heart disease, those who were obese were less likely to die over the next 7.5 years compared with normal-weight men.

Past research has linked obesity to longer survival among people with heart failure, a chronic condition in which the heart muscle is too weak to pump enough blood to meet the body's needs. Some studies also suggest that obese patients fare better following heart bypass surgery.

Now the new findings, published in The American Journal of Medicine, suggest that this so-called "obesity paradox" extends to other heart disease patients as well." (Reuters Health)

"When fat (dare I say it?) is a good thing" - "Two new studies have received little notice in the media, perhaps because their findings tell young people caught up in dieting and the desire to be thin, that they need to eat more and have more body fat." (Junkfood Science)

"No fat children allowed" - "Families of fat children being reported to child protective services is becoming increasingly more common here in America. But a doctor in Scotland has called upon the British Medical Association to consider fat children as evidence of parental neglect, and that their parents be prosecuted and the children taken under custody by authorities." (Junkfood Science)

"School-based obesity prevention promising" - "NEW YORK - A multi-component health promotion program in schools may help excess weight gain among 12 to 13 year-olds, a Dutch study shows." (Reuters Health)

"Please just look" - "To all of those who might think that our children need more programs to tell them about healthy eating, exercise or making "healthy lifestyle" choices -- regardless of whether you might believe it's not a diet because you don't specifically mention their weight, or if you do and support childhood obesity prevention programs -- please read the three entries at Mama Vision today. Please just do." (Junkfood Science)

"MCA backs closure of Arctic waters" - "The Marine Conservation Alliance (MCA) supports action today by the North Pacific Fishery Management Council (NPFMC) to close all federal waters north of the Bering Strait to commercial fishing until a management plan is fully developed.

“Climate change is having a significant effect on the Arctic, opening previously ice-covered waters and drawing cold water species further north,” said MCA’s Dave Benton. “The Council is right to look at closing these waters as a precautionary measure. This gives us the opportunity to conduct the scientific review necessary to develop a plan for how fisheries might be conducted in the Arctic in the future.” (Marine Conservation Alliance)

"Freedom, not climate, is at risk" - "We are living in strange times. One exceptionally warm winter is enough – irrespective of the fact that in the course of the 20th century the global temperature increased only by 0.6 per cent – for the environmentalists and their followers to suggest radical measures to do something about the weather, and to do it right now." (Vaclav Klaus, Financial Times)

"Global Warming and its Evil Twin 'Climate Change' Predictions Wrong on Both Counts" - "Global warming alarmists are a clever bunch. They have very carefully changed the issue from "global warming" to "climate change." Now any change in weather, be it mild winters or cool summers can be attributed to "climate change." Whatever the weather, the news is very bad." (Tom DeWeese, American Policy Center)

"Anthony Watt Analysis Of The Role Of Paint Cover On Monitored Temperature" - "Climate Audit has a very interesting posting on the role of paint on measured temperatures which is being investigated by Anthony Watts. This is clearly a publishable result when completed and Climate Science urges Anthony to do that!" (Climate Science)

"White Is the New Green" - "Prepare yourselves for white parking lots and roofs, as the reflective shade joins green on the environment-friendly color palette " (Greg Blonder, Business Week)

"An Article “The Politicised Science of Climate Change” by Garth Paltridge" - "One of the goals of Climate Science is to show that the concerns regarding the lack of balance on climate change issues is shared by a number of prominent climate scientists." (Climate Science)

Blast from the (recent) past: "VIEWPOINT: GLOBAL WARMING NATURAL, MAY END WITHIN 20 YEARS" - "COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Global warming is a natural geological process that could begin to reverse itself within 10 to 20 years, predicts an Ohio State University researcher." (OSU)

"Human-Spewed Nitrogen Helps Forests Absorb Carbon" - "WASHINGTON - Small doses of human-spewed nitrogen -- emitted by cars, factories and farm chemicals -- can help forests grow more and absorb climate-warming carbon dioxide, researchers reported on Wednesday." (Reuters)

"Could Heat and Drought Be in the Cards This Summer" - "As La Nina slowly comes on, the prospects of a droughty and hot summer are increasing. Historically this has especially been the case after El Nino winters. Drought and heat would of course be blamed on global warming but the historical plots of drought show there is no tendency for a steadily increased frequency of drought during the last century.

See what La Ninas after El Ninos winter have meant and more on why ocean temperatures are more likely behind changing drought frequency than greenhouse gases." (Joe D’Aleo, Icecap)

"Changing the Climate" - "The Bush administration seizes the initiative on climate-change policy." (Jonathan H. Adler, NRO)

"Schwarzenegger Says Tailpipe Emissions Lawsuit Inevitable" - "SACRAMENTO, California, June 13, 2007 - Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger today warned the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that a lawsuit over California's tough motor vehicle greenhouse gas emissions standards is "inevitable" unless the federal agency decides whether or not to allow them by October 24, 2007." (ENS)

"Carbon divide: Detroit, coal states offer false choice" - "Anyone who thinks that climate change is purely a partisan issue isn't paying attention.

Increasingly, the national debate on global warming is breaking down between carbon states - those that produce coal, oil and automobiles - and those that see a future beyond fossil fuels. Republicans and Democrats are all over the map.

This carbon-state split flared up in Washington last week when Rep. Rick Boucher, a Democrat from the coal state of Virginia, unveiled draft energy legislation that would prevent California and other states from enacting their own greenhouse gas laws.

The legislation would also restrict the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse gas emissions - a reaction to a Supreme Court ruling in April that said the EPA must treat these gases as a pollutant, regulate them or explain why it won't." (McClatchy-Tribune News Service)

"Senate set to act on renewable utility plan" - "WASHINGTON - The fate of a proposal in the Senate to require U.S. utilities to get 15 percent of electricity supply from renewable sources by 2020 could come down to which way the wind blows - literally.

The proposal by New Mexico Democrat Jeff Bingaman has drawn opposition from lawmakers from states that don't have the prevailing wind currents to justify building giant wind turbines, which will be key for utilities to meet the target." (Reuters)

"The Senate Energy Bill: Ignoring the 800-pound gorilla in the room" - "GIVEN THE alternative of doing nothing about global warming -- which President Bush and the Republican-led Congress excelled at for the past six years -- the flurry of activity on climate change in Washington is welcome. President Bush at least agreed at the recent Group of Eight summit in Germany to international talks on the topic, and the Democratic-led Senate is debating an energy bill designed in part to limit greenhouse gas emissions. But here's the problem with the latter: Nowhere in its 277 pages does the legislation even entertain the notion of incentives to curb greenhouse gas emissions, through a carbon tax or a cap-and-trade system or both." (Washington Post)

"Obama and Durbin Vote Against US Energy Independence" - "On June 13, 2007, Senators Durbin and Obama (and actually ALL Democrats and the RINOs from Maine) voted against an amendment 1505 (to S.Amdt 1502) to H.R. 6 (Clean Energy Act of 2007)." (Bill Wangard)

"Obama Faces Coal Backlash" - "While the mainstream press focuses on Monday's symbolic "no confidence" vote over Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, the Senate also took up the energy bill, legislation with far-reaching implications for investors and at least one presidential candidate.

Fuel-efficiency standards for automakers, and renewable energy requirements for utilities will dominate the headlines, but amendments promoting coal-based fuels fall squarely into the "politics makes strange bedfellows" department.

It turns out Democratic presidential aspirant and Illinois Sen. Barack Obama has more in common with the U.S. Air Force than the Natural Resources Defense Council or Moveon.org when it comes to solving America's dependence on foreign oil." (The Street)

"Cows, Climate Change and Carbon Credits" - "The biggest coal burner in the U.S. thinks it has come up with a cheap way to start fixing its global-warming problem: cow dung." (Jeffrey Ball, Wall Street Journal)

"CAFE quicksand" - "Every so often in our nation's capital, a "don't just stand there, do something" mentality takes over and consumers inevitably suffer the consequences. Well, it's about to happen again as some in Congress rush to try to stop global climate change by setting drastically higher fuel economy standards for motor vehicles. And once again, consumers should beware." (James H. Burnley, Washington Times)

"Brown backs more power on climate change" - "Gordon Brown is ready to back a significant extension of Europe's role in tackling climate change as part of moves to put a more populist gloss on the revived EU constitution. The move, likely to be endorsed at a summit in Brussels next week, could enable the EU to take a formal role in negotiating future global deals on capping carbon emissions." (London Telegraph)

"China says G-8 climate deal a good first step, but more details needed" - "BEIJING: China said Thursday that a climate change agreement reached at last week's G-8 summit was a good start, but that more specific details are needed on how developed countries will contribute.

Leaders from the Group of Eight developed countries, holding an annual summit in Germany, clinched a broad accord to try halving greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. But the agreement said binding emission targets should not be set until all major polluters join in." (Associated Press)

"Why Honda Accord Hybrid ran out of gas" - "The 'green' sedan came through with a show of power but fell short on savings at the pump. It also failed to get drivers into the freeway carpool lane." (Sacramento Bee)

"Weak Asia Policies Curb Green Power Growth - Experts" - "SINGAPORE - Weak government policies, high start-up costs and misguided short-term incentives are hampering the growth of renewable energy in Asia, industry experts say, stressing the need for clear long-term rules." (Reuters)

"Polluted, Drought-Stricken China Eyes Sea Water" - "BEIJING - China, where hundreds of millions lack regular access to drinking water due to drought and pollution, plans to build a huge sea water desalination plant south of Shanghai, state media said on Wednesday." (Reuters)

"Improving plants' abilities to cope with saline conditions" - "A method for increasing plants’ tolerance to salt stress and thus preventing stunted growth and even plant death has been developed by researchers at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. The method has significant consequences for dealing with soil salinization, which is an acute problem for a wide range of crops in different regions of the world, including Israel." (The Hebrew University of Jerusalem)

June 13, 2007

"Sweeteners, trans fat creating 'toxic food environment'" - "We've heard it all too often over the last while: This generation of kids won't outlive their parents. Unhealthy eats and sedentary living have combined to send the number of overweight and obese people skyrocketing." (Rosie Schwartz, National Post)

"These new rules on junk food adverts won't stop the rot" - "Voluntary codes not enough to tackle obesity epidemic, says teachers head." (Belfast Telegraph)

"Expert Panel Says to Call Kids 'Obese'" - "Doctors ought to quit using fuzzy terms to define children's weight problems and instead refer to truly fat kids as overweight or obese, a committee of medical experts recommended." (AP)

"Rethinking the Obesity ‘Crisis’" - "Weight has always been hard to control, says a leading science writer." (Laura Vanderkam, The American)

"'Almighty' enlists green initiative: Eco-conscious marketers support film" - "Universal may be hoping to mint some green at the box office when "Evan Almighty" bows June 22, but in the meantime, the studio has partnered with a host of environmentally conscious marketers to promote the comedy through a green initiative.

Roughly $25 million in marketing support is being provided by U parent GE (through its Ecomagination campaign), Sheraton Hotels & Resorts, Travelocity, Environmental Defense Fund, Bear Naked, L.A. Zoo, San Diego Zoo, BP Solar and Dell Computers to help U launch its Get on Board eco-awareness campaign and give audiences tips on how to help slow the effects of global warming -- while letting them know "Almighty" is hitting theaters." (Variety)

"Rolling Stone Finding Out Green Isn’t Green Enough" - "Just about every major magazine has made some sort of nod to global warming, and Rolling Stone plans to do so in its June 28 issue: on top of the requisite interview with former Vice President Al Gore and an essay by the environmentalist Robert F. Kennedy Jr., the magazine will start printing on paper that is said to have less of a negative impact on the environment.

But as Rolling Stone and others try to be green, they draw criticism from environmentalists who think that if this is walking the walk, it is doing so with a pronounced limp." (New York Times)

"U.S. Weighs Reducing Spotted Owl Habitat" - "GRANTS PASS, Ore. -- The Bush administration Tuesday proposed cutting 1.5 million acres from Northwest forests considered critical to the survival of the northern spotted owl, reopening the 1990s battle between timber production and wildlife habitat on public lands.

The owl, which became a symbol of the decline of the Northwest's timber industry, was declared a threatened species in 1990 due primarily to heavy logging in the old growth forests where it nests and feeds.

Recent research has noted that while old growth forests suitable for owl habitat have increased, owl numbers have continued to decline, and that the owl faces a new threat from a cousin, the barred owl, that has been invading its territory." (AP)

"New Theory on Old Debate: Comet Killed the Mammoth" - "There are intriguing new clues in the mystery of how the woolly mammoth met its demise in North America more than 10,000 years ago.

For decades, scientists have debated whether the giant, elephant-like beasts were driven to extinction by the arrival of overzealous human hunters or by global warming at the end of the Pleistocene era, the last great Ice Age. Some say it was a combination of the two.

Recently, a group of more than two dozen scientists offered a new explanation. They have found signs that a comet -- or multiple fragments of one -- exploded over Canada about 12,900 years ago with the force equivalent to millions of nuclear weapons. That unleashed, they said, a tremendous shock wave that destroyed much of what was in its path and ignited wildfires across North America." (Washington Post)

"Extra-Terrestrial Warming" - "The planet is warming at an alarming rate — about half a degree Celsius since 1970. But, in this case, the planet under discussion is not Earth. It's Mars." (Courier & Press)

"First buoy to monitor ocean acidification launched" - "The first buoy to monitor ocean acidification has been launched in the Gulf of Alaska. Attached to the 10-foot-diameter buoy are sensors to measure climate indicators." (NSF)

"Hurricane eye on insurers" - "Throughout the hurricane zone that follows America's Atlantic coastline from Texas to North Carolina, a populist furor has gripped politicians intent on punishing private property insurance companies.

Although the particulars differ from state-to-state, it appears clear ongoing bipartisan efforts have transferred so much hurricane risk to the government that taxpayers will end up footing an ever-larger percentage of the bill when a storm hits. As hurricane season begins, it seems ending this trend toward "windstorm socialism" and protecting taxpayers may ultimately require a massive federal overhaul of how America deals with insurance." (Eli Lehrer, Washington Times)

"Obituary – Professor August H. (Augie) Auer jr" - "“This sudden loss of Augie Auer is a colossal blow not just to his family and friends and his colleagues in the New Zealand Climate Science Coalition, but to everyone in New Zealand who has a regard for truth and the role of science,” said Owen McShane, a co-founder with Mr Auer of the coalition, which they formed in April last year to challenge official pronouncements about man-made global warming." (Press Release: New Zealand Climate Science Coalition)

Enviros terrorizing kids: "New study shows children fear environmental disaster" (.pdf) - "A report released today by the Australian Childhood Foundation, in the lead up to their annual fundraiser Childhood Hero Day Thursday 14 June, has revealed that Australian children are deeply concerned about the state of the environment and the impact of climate change." (Australian Childhood Foundation)

Darryl Hannah wants the media to terrorize everyone more: "Hannah asks media to 'join us' on crusade against global warming" - "Daryl Hannah says it's time for the mainstream media to get on board in the battle against global warming." (CP)

"The school bully is, alas, right on climate change" - "Last week we held a school meeting to tackle the disturbing problem of childhood obesity. The jolly headmistress put forward a plan by which we should all subscribe to a binding target that the children will reduce their average weight by five kilos in five years' time. George, the school bully, disagreed. George said the targets plan was purely rhetorical and the operative date so far in the future that it relieved everyone of the burden of doing anything now. We would do better to focus on policies rather than statements of aspiration and undertake research and analysis of why children were so fat and what could be done about it. But George is less fractious since the Iraqi gang started teasing him and we all went away having strongly agreed to consider losing weight.

The rest of the world berates the US for failure to ratify the Kyoto treaty but it makes little difference whether countries adhere to the treaty or not. Apart from the estimable Swedes, the only important countries likely to come close to meeting their carbon reduction obligations are Britain and Germany, and these for unrelated reasons. Margaret Thatcher took revenge on the union leader Arthur Scargill by closing coal production and market forces shut down the polluting heavy industry of the old communist provinces. The carbon emissions trading scheme borders on farce, doing little to reduce emissions but providing a subsidy to emitters." (Financial Times)

"Call their tax" - "After much effort, G8 leaders last week agreed to "stabilize greenhouse-gas concentrations at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system." This is the same wording as in Article Two of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, signed in 1992. In other words, after months of negotiations, world leaders agreed on a text they had already ratified 15 years earlier." (Ross McKitrick, Financial Post)

"The T3 Tax" - "I try to stay away from policy discussions here (although others sneak it in), but this suggestion by Ross McKitrick is so ingenious that I’ll relax my policy for a while. Ross proposes a carbon tax linked to tropical troposphere temperatures - the fingerprint of the CO2 contribution to warming. If models are wrong and solar or something else is causing climate change, then it would have negligible impact. If models are right, then the tax would go up a lot. It’s an elegant idea. Calling everyone’s bluff.

Of course, it wouldn’t generate any commissions for lobbyists and brokers or expense accounts in night clubs in Moscow and Montreal; so it’s chances of passage are negligible. But isn’t it a better idea than anything on the field so far?" (Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit)

"Tories' green policy takes a hit" - "The Conservative government's goal of slashing greenhouse gas pollution in half by 2050 would likely be out of reach by 2020, because of timid policies introduced in its new regulatory plan for large industries, says an analysis released yesterday by the C.D. Howe Institute." (Ottawa Citizen)

From our Tyndall watcher: "Mike Hulme's appraisal of 2006" - "The second phase of the Tyndall Centre was officially launched on 4 May 2006 at The Atrium in Westminster with an attendance of over 150 stakeholders and academics. The two guests of honour were The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, and the Right Hon. John Gummer MP, representing, respectively, the Church of England and the Conservative Party, two organizations newly committed to making climate change a central issue in their strategizing. The Tyndall Centre has been able to input into both organizations, a sign that the Centre has firmly established its authority and competence with a wide range of institutions in UK society.

From the Energy Programme, a commissioned report examined the carbon reduction implications for the UK of achieving the 2ºC EU policy goal, suggesting that reductions of up to 90 per cent by 2050 may well be necessary, rather than the conventional wisdom of 60 per cent.

Our work has also been widely cited in the Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) of the IPCC, the ultimate strategic assessment of climate change. Eight Tyndall Centre staff have had lead author responsibilities in Working Groups 2 and 3 of AR4, and Neil Adger (Working Group 2) and Terry Barker (Working Group 3) have been co-opted onto the drafting teams for the crucial Summary for Policy Makers.

The Tyndall Centre initiated and/or contributed to a number of agenda-setting activities related to the science and policy of climate change. Prominent among these was the contribution made by Tyndall researchers to the Stern Review on the economics of climate change.

Commissioned work from the Review team was undertaken by Tyndall researchers drawing upon work undertaken in the adaptation, coasts and integrated modeling Programmes of the Centre. A Tyndall research fellow was also seconded to the Stern team for the duration. This activity is an excellent example of Knowledge Transfer, of bringing science to bear on policy. We have also followed up on the Stern Review with our own agenda-setting exercise through a one-day seminar in the City of London on financing international investment in low carbon technology, which attracted several dozen people from the finance and investment community, in addition to large numbers from the research and policy communities. The Centre has also opened up new agendas in other important aspects of climate change responses.

We have also had opportunity to engage with senior executives and commissioning editors at the BBC about strategies and options for communicating climate change to diverse audiences.

In addition to the interaction with the BBC mentioned above, our Science Communication Officer (Laura Middleton) was hired by the Corporation to act as a researcher for some of their climate change programmes, including the major documentary fronted by David Attenborough.

Throughout the year, Tyndall staff have given dozens of talks and lectures for the public and for professional associations.

One of our PhD students (Neil Jennings) won the Ben and Jerry’s climate change challenge and will now receive training as a special climate change ambassador.

We have also engaged with the UK Parliament in a number of ways – presenting oral evidence to Select Committees (e.g. Science and Technology, cross-Party committee on climate change, Environmental Audit committee), speaking at Party political conferences (Labour and Lib Dems), and acting as consultants to the Conservative Party quality of life policy review.

And we have briefed the new Environment Secretary (David Miliband) on climate change.

Five new PhDs were awarded during the year, three of whom then secured research positions within the Centre, further building capacity.

The Centre continues to evaluate and pursue opportunities for founding fully or semi-commercial organizations that, while distinct from the Centre, will be able to apply new insights and tools generated by the Centre to the competent solving of climate change management problems.

(generate new organisations, generate consensus)

The impact of the Centre with respect to climate change on the knowledge base, on the policy debates and on society at large, continues to grow. We are now a research entity with global reach and visibility.

The University of East Anglia has appointed Dr Bob Watson, environment advisor to the World Bank, as a new research professor from 1 August 2007 on an open appointment. Professor Watson will move full-time to the UK and one of his primary roles at UEA will be to help the strategic development of the Centre into the period beyond 2009.

Quite frightening in its viral expansion." (Dennis Ambler)

In the virtual realm: "Global warming is speeding up ocean waves" - "Gigantic ocean waves, spanning hundreds of kilometres from crest to crest, have been speeding up thanks to global warming, a new model suggests." (NewScientist.com news service)

"Another Paper That Documents The Major Role Of Regional Climate Forcings" - "There is yet another peer reviewed paper that discusses the major role of regional climate forcings in effecting societally important weather events (thanks to Justin Walters and Paul Biggs for alerting us to this paper!)." (Climate Science)

"New theory aims to explain recent temperature, climate extremes" - "Using an ocean of data, sophisticated mathematical models and supercomputing resources, researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory are putting climate models to the test with particular focus on weather extremes." (ORNL)

"A Kilimanjaro We-told-you-so" - "File this one under “we been telling you this for years.”" (WCR)

From the Left Coast? Wow! "The snows of Kilimanjaro" - "By removing Mount Kilimanjaro as the poster peak for global warming, scientist Philip Mote of the University of Washington has reminded us that good science does not run with the political tides.

Politically, the evaporating ice cap on the African equator was a useful emblem for the theory of human-caused global warming. Al Gore used the mountain that way in his film, "An Inconvenient Truth." The article in the American Scientist by Mote and climber Georg Kaser may be used by opponents of human-caused warming — and of Gore — though Mote and Kaser don't interpret their findings that way.

Science is not politics. It does not vote Democrat or Republican. It examines, hypothesizes, tests and concludes — and always provisionally.

To explain global warming, most scientists have concluded that human activity is the main cause. This may be challenged at any time.

The research by Mote and Kaser reminds us we do not know everything, and what may look like "A" may in fact be "B." It reminds us to be careful, lest our scientific ideas ossify into political stone." (The Seattle Times)

"Green group slams EU carbon-trading system" - "Businesses in the European Union will not be forced to reduce their carbon emissions by as much as previously thought because of "short-sighted" plans for the EU's carbon trading system, environmental group WWF said on Wednesday." (AFP)

"Send Us Your Carbon Dioxide!" - "With Europe looking to drastically cut carbon emissions, Holland has come up with an interim solution. Greenhouse gases from northwestern Europe could be pumped to the Netherlands for storage in depleted gas fields there. It's one thing to promise drastic reductions in carbon dioxide emissions. But as many countries in Europe are discovering, it is quite another thing to actually fulfill those promises. Merely reducing CO2 emissions isn't nearly enough." (Der Spiegel)

Oh dear... "A stairway to heaven?" - "Earth has a natural transport system standing ready to get rid of carbon dioxide. Here is how it might be turned on." (The Economist)

"India snubs West on climate change" - "India will not curb its greenhouse gas emissions as long as the West continues to treat it as a 'second class global citizen' with less right to pollute than the developed world, a senior Indian environment official has said." (London Telegraph)

"Fight Global Warming, Give Up Meat" - "London - A leaked e-mail message has led to speculation that the British government plans to promote vegetarianism as part of a broader strategy to fight climate change.

In a message sent earlier this year to a vegetarian lobbying group, the Environment Agency -- a statutory body set up under a 1995 law -- said it was considering ways to deal with global warming, one of which was to encourage people to eat less meat.

The agency said that it was unlikely that most people would swear off meat entirely and that the issue would have to be introduced "gently" for fear of alienating the public.

The official who authored the e-mail message also wrote that the potential benefits to the climate of a vegan diet could be "very significant." A vegan diet is one that shuns all meat, poultry, eggs and dairy products." (CNSNews.com)

"Boxer Makes Inaccurate Claims About Gas Price Act: Floor Debate on Amendment Filled with Erroneous Comments" - "WASHINGTON, DC – Senator James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Ranking Member of the Environment & Public Works Committee (EPW), today responded to EPW Chairman Barbara Boxer’s (D-Ca) assertions regarding Inhofe’s amendment to the energy bill, the Gas Petroleum Refinery Improvement & Community Empowerment Act of 2007 (Gas PRICE Act).

“It’s unfortunate that Senator Boxer chose to make wild unsubstantiated claims against my Gas Price Act amendment which if passed would help decrease our dependence on foreign refined products and therefore reduce costs to the consumer,” Senator Inhofe said.

“It’s even more unfortunate that Senator Boxer has wasted six month’s of the Environment and Public Works Committee’s time on useless climate hearings that don’t even address current legislative proposals. A more productive use of the committee’s time would have been to address the factors which will make America more energy independent.” (EPW)

Dumber by the day: "PM says trade barriers likely for countries that ignore warming" - "MELBOURNE - Countries that refused to confront climate change and environmental sustainability could face trade barriers on global markets, Prime Minister Helen Clark told business leaders in Melbourne yesterday.

Speaking in a country that has refused to ratify the Kyoto protocols on climate change and in which the environment is emerging as a critical issue in this year's federal election, she warned that governments could not afford to ignore the need for serious measures." (New Zealand Herald)

"The carbon offset market is on the nose" - "As reports emerge of scandals in the European Union and the Group of Eight, it is paramount that any local emissions scheme is free of vested interests, writes economics editor Alan Wood." (The Australian)

From CO2 Science this week:

The Global Atmosphere's Aerosol Optical Thickness Record: In a short but important paper, Mischenko et al. (2007) present a plot of the global monthly average of the column aerosol optical thickness (AOT) of the atmosphere that stretches from August 1981 to June 2005, which they developed from what they describe as "the longest uninterrupted record of global satellite estimates of the column AOT over the oceans, the Global Aerosol Climatology Project (GACP) record." This record, in turn, was derived from "the International Satellite Cloud Climatology Project (ISCCP) DX radiance data set," which is "composed of calibrated and sampled Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer radiances."

As can be seen from our adaptation of the eight researchers' graphical results, which we have plotted in the figure below, "the green line," as they describe it, "reveals a long-term decreasing tendency in the tropospheric AOT," such that "the resulting decrease in the tropospheric AOT during the 14-year period [1991-2005] comes out to be 0.03." And they add that "this trend is significant at the 99% confidence level."

The GACP record of the globally averaged column AOT over the world's oceans. Adapted from Mischenko et al. (2007).

In discussing their results, Mischenko et al. note that "observations of downward solar radiation fluxes at earth's surface have shown a recovery from the previous decline known as global 'dimming', with the 'brightening' beginning around 1990." Their AOT record harmonizes with these observations, as well as with estimated trends in primary anthropogenic emissions of SO 2 and black carbon, which they say are known to "contribute substantially to the global AOT."

These several facts raise serious questions about attributions of late-20th-century global warming to the concomitant increase in the atmosphere's CO 2 concentration, for as noted by Stanhill (2007), the changes in the flux of solar radiation received at the surface of the earth as a consequence of the global dimming and brightening phenomena far exceed the changes in longwave radiative forcing produced by historical changes in the air's CO 2 content; and these observations would appear to relegate anthropogenic CO 2 emissions to a much less important role in terms of their ability to elicit significant changes in earth's surface temperature.

Unwilling to accept this conclusion, climate alarmists contend that recent global brightening is merely allowing CO 2 -induced global warming to become more evident, which enables them to contend that the CO 2 greenhouse effect is actually much stronger than even they had originally believed, having been masked for some time by the cooling power of the prior buildup of the great aerosol load of the atmosphere. Consequently, we have proponents of CO 2 -induced global warming, such as Science magazine's Richard Kerr (2007), writing news items with titles that ask "Is a thinning haze unveiling the real global warming?" - when a better question to ask (or at least a reasonable alternative) might be "Is a thinning haze revealing its own great power to warm the earth?" Also, such writers seem to have no trouble finding scientists willing to cast doubt on what they perceive to be the disturbing implications of the unfolding aerosol work. In Kerr's case, the doubter is Sarah Doherty of the University of Washington, who says there's simply too much uncertainty in the aerosol data, and that the problem lies, in part, "in stringing together records from five different instruments flown on five different satellites over the years."

As if anticipating this attack, Mischenko et al. clearly state in their report that "the successful validation of GACP retrievals using precise sun photometer data taken from 1983 through 2004 indicates that the ISCCP radiance calibration is likely to be reliable," and they further note that "this conclusion is reinforced by the close correspondence of calculated and observed top of atmosphere solar fluxes." What is more, they say "the GACP AOT record appears to be self-consistent, with no drastic intra-satellite variations, and is consistent with the Stratospheric Aerosol and Gas Experiment record."

All things considered, the findings of Mischenko et al. do not bode well for the world's climate alarmists, who continue to claim that anthropogenic CO 2 emissions have been the predominant source of global warming over the latter part of the 20th century; for there is now ample reason to believe that a significant portion of the observed warming may actually have been caused by the concomitant increase in surface heating provided by the atmosphere's declining aerosol optical thickness.

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

Subject Index Summary:
Glaciers (South America): What can we learn about the global warming debate from the history of glaciers in South America?

Plant Growth Data:
This week we add new results (blue background) of plant growth responses to atmospheric CO 2 enrichment obtained from experiments described in the peer-reviewed scientific literature for: Maize, Narrowleaf Plantain, Perennial Ryegrass, and Wheat.

Journal Reviews:
Summer Heat Waves: Will they really be exacerbated by rising atmospheric CO 2 concentrations, as climate alarmists contend?

Soil Moisture Trends: IPCC Simulations vs. Real-World Observations: How do the two compare?

Atmospheric CO 2 Enrichment Effects on Marine Picocyanobacteria: Are they detrimental, beneficial or insignificant?

CO 2 Effects on Grassland Soil Microorganisms: What are they? And what do they imply about the long-term effectiveness of the aerial fertilization effect of the ongoing rise in the air's CO 2 content?

20th-Century Accelerated Growth of Longleaf Pine Trees: A Belated Review of a Paper Published in 1993: Was the accelerated growth due to global warming, some other aspect of climate change, or the aerial fertilization effect of the historical increase in the air's CO 2 concentration?

Hart, MI Temperature Record of the Week:
This issue's Temperature Record of the Week is from Chaska, MN. During the period of most significant greenhouse gas buildup over the past century, i.e., 1930 and onward, Chaska's mean annual temperature has cooled by 3.09 degrees Fahrenheit. Not much global warming here! (co2science.org)

"Businesses accused of green hypocrisy" - "The business community was accused yesterday of "cynicism" for saying one thing and doing another in the fight against climate change. At a "summit" on the issue organised by the Guardian in London, Tony Juniper, executive director of Friends of the Earth, accused Shell of sponsoring the event in a bid to align itself with green issues while failing to clean up its own act." (The Guardian)

"Coal Use Rise Looks Bad for Climate Aims" - "LONDON - Ambitious goals to fight climate change look less achievable as coal use continued to soar last year in China and India, data compiled by BP Plc showed on Tuesday. The data confirmed that China was on track to overtake the United States as the world's number one carbon emitter this year, one analyst said." (Reuters)

"Senate Democrats Propose Loans for Coal-Based Fuel Plants" - "WASHINGTON, June 12 — As the Senate began debate Tuesday on a sprawling bill to reduce oil consumption, top Democrats were circulating a proposal to provide $10 billion in loans for plants that make diesel fuel from coal.

The proposal highlights the horse-trading involving powerful industry groups as Democratic leaders push for legislation that would require higher mileage in cars and a huge increase in the production of renewable fuels made from plants like switch grass.

But many environmental groups are flatly opposed. “We don’t think the federal government should be subsidizing liquid coal,” said Erich Pica of Friends of the Earth. “From a global warming and an environmental position, liquid coal is an unacceptable source of energy.” (New York Times)

"First, Do No Harm to Motorists: Six Reasons Not To Raise CAFE Standards" - "Invoking global warming and high gasoline prices, politicians are on an energy-efficiency kick. Numerous proposals to boost efficiency standards for a huge array of items—from furnaces to appliances to cars—are on the table. The Senate may soon take up one of the most prominent of these, the Renewable Fuels, Consumer Protection, and Energy Efficiency Act of 2007 (S. 1419)." (Sam Kazman, CEI)

"Food price rises force a cut in biofuels" - "China’s communist rulers announced a moratorium on the production of ethanol from corn and other food crops yesterday at the very time that Western leaders are rushing to embrace alternative food-based fuel technology.

Beijing’s move underlines concerns that ethanol production is driving up rapidly the costs of corn and grain. It appears to reflect a growing reality about food-based alternative fuel: it is far more expensive both economically and environmentally, than Western politicians are likely to admit.

Calls for biofuels are politically attractive for European and US politicians, amid rising petrol prices and concerns about global warming and an overreliance on Middle Eastern oil.

Communist officials in Beijing, however, who do not have the political concerns of democratically elected leaders in the West, have reacted to a rapid rise in food prices and an intense demand on farm land that threatens to make ethanol production unsustainable." (London Times)

"Beijing Sends in the Energy Police" - "BEIJING — Quick, check the thermostat - the energy police are on patrol. Businesses in Beijing will have to be more aware of their energy use after the city formed a team to monitor energy-saving practices in response to the central government's calls to cut consumption in big cities, state media reported." (Associated Press)

"English kids think carrots grow on trees" - "BROXFORD, England, June 11 -- Farmers in England say that many children are so removed from nature and the land they think carrots grow on trees.

Keith Siddorn of Meadowbrook Farm in Broxton told the Chester Chronicle children who visit his farm on tours do not know which animal pork comes from. They do know that milk comes from a cow but if asked about beef they get confused because they do not realize the same animal can serve two purposes.

"They don't even know whether a carrot is grown in the ground or on a tree," he said. "As far as they know, their food comes in a plastic bag from the shop and after that it is very blurred for them." (UPI)

"Shipping pollution reduces green value of organic foods"  -"EDMONTON -- Canadians picking up organically grown food at the grocery store may not be helping the environment as much as they think they are. Pollution caused by the planes, ships and trains that bring the produce from places like Mexico and South America may offset much of the green good the food does, a study suggests." (CanWest News Service; Edmonton Journal)

"Genetically modified 'Zombie seeds' raise environmental concerns" - "Environmentalists are raising the alarm about the latest development in genetically modified foods -- "zombie seeds" programmed to be sterile until treated with a special chemical.

These and other "sexually dysfunctional" seeds are being developed by the biotech industry as a solution to the problem of genetically modified plants contaminating conventional crops.

News of the effort emerges at the same time as the House of Commons is debating a bill to ban the zombie seeds' predecessor, Terminator seeds, which are programmed to produce sterile plants to prevent contamination." (Ottawa Citizen)

"Food with 0.9% GM still organic, say farm ministers" - "Organic foods can be labelled "GM-free" even if they contain up to 0.9% genetically modified content, European agriculture ministers decided yesterday. The decision provoked outcry among environmental campaigners and supporters of organic farming, who said it would lead to "genetic contamination." (The Guardian)

"EU's organic labeling vote upsets Italy" - "ROME, June 12 -- Several Italian constituencies expressed ire at an EU vote allowing producers to label "organic" genetically modified organism-contaminated foods." (UPI)

June 12, 2007

"Washington court will hear autism vaccine suits" - "WASHINGTON - A special court that will pit scientists against activists in the debate over whether vaccines have caused autism in many children begins hearings on Monday with the first test case, involving a 12-year-old Arizona girl.

Although scientists have produced strong evidence that the vaccines are not linked to the disease -- a very vocal group of people remains unconvinced." (Reuters)

"Coverage of Autism “Vaccine Court” Off to a Bad Start" - "Washington Post attempts to be fair to both “scientific” sides of the argument gives credibility to troubling "experts." (Trevor Butterworth, STATS)

"Mother Nature’s Pesticides" - "When I posted on research by Bruce Ames and Lois Swirsky Gold showing that humans ingest a lot more natural pesticides than synthetic pesticides, I expected a sequel to the earlier denunciations from Rachel Carson’s admirers. (To answer their most frequent question: No, I am not accepting bribes from chemical companies.)

But I was pleasantly surprised by the latest round of comments. Yes, some readers did object, and some echoed Ms. Carson’s argument that the synthetic pesticides are more of a menace. But the debate was dominated by readers like Andrew, Dennis Mangan, Doc Individ and Btavshanjian. They concentrated on the chemistry of toxins instead of making generalizations about nature or corporations. And when you make a dispassionate comparison of natural versus synthetic pesticides, Mother Nature doesn’t come out so well." (John Tierney, New York Times)

"Give Us DDT" - "KAMPALA, Uganda -- Though Africa's sad experience with colonialism ended in the 1960s, a lethal vestige remains: malaria. It is the biggest killer of Ugandan and all African children. Yet it remains preventable and curable. Last week in Germany, G-8 leaders committed new resources to the fight against the mosquito-borne disease and promised to use every available tool.

Now they must honor this promise by supporting African independence in the realm of disease control. We must be able to use Dichloro-Diphenyl-Trichloroethane -- DDT.

The United States and Europe eradicated malaria by 1960, largely with the use of DDT. At the time, Uganda tested the pesticide in the Kanungu district and reduced malaria by 98%. Despite this success, we lacked the resources to sustain the program. Rather than partner with us to improve our public health infrastructure, however, foreign donors blanched. They used Africa's lack of infrastructure to justify not investing in it.

Today, every single Ugandan still remains at risk. Over 10 million Ugandans are infected each year, and up to 100,000 of our mothers and children die from the disease. Recently Ugandan country music star Job Paul Kafeero died of the disease, a reminder that no one is beyond its reach. Yet, many still argue that Africa's poor infrastructure makes indoor spraying too costly and complex a means of fighting malaria." (Sam Zaramba, Wall Street Journal)

"The Church of Rachel Carson" - "One hundred years after her birth in May of 1907, it's difficult to underestimate Rachel Carson's influence. Unfortunately, it's all bad. That hasn't stopped her from remaining an academic deity to the campus Left." (Eli Lehrer, FrontPageMag.com)

"Rachel Carson: Debunked, but Still Lionized" - "It has become clear to anyone with eyes and an open mind that the worldwide ban on DDT that is just now in the process of too-slowly being lifted has caused massive loss of human life over a period of decades that could, and should, have been avoided." (Tom Blumer, News Busters)

"Kids Today" - "In the wake of shocking crimes such as the mass murder at Virginia Tech, parents are bound to be worried about the safety of their children. But there is good news to report: America's children are actually safer. Since the early 1990s, crimes against children and adolescents have plummeted. The dangers have decreased, often dramatically.

In a review article in the Journal of Social Issues last year, sociologist David Finkelhor and clinical psychologist Lisa Jones document that rates of crime have dropped by as much as 70%, depending on the nature of the offense. The authors conclude: "the era of continually rising numbers of child maltreatment and crime victimization cases is probably over." (Wall Street Journal)

"Rising skin cancer rates are more likely to affect wealthy people, says 12-year review" - "Skin cancer levels have shown a significant increase in Northern Ireland since the early 1990s and are more likely to affect men, older people and those living in more affluent areas, according to a study just published in the June issue of British Journal of Dermatology. Researchers who looked at official cancer statistics for nearly 23,000 patients over a 12-year period, reported a 20 per cent increase in patients and a 62 per cent increase in skin cancer samples processed by pathology laboratories." (Blackwell Publishing Ltd.)

So, more-affluent people either get to take more sun-soaked vacations or they can afford to have every little spot checked and hence have a higher discovery rate.

"In Defense Of Sprawl" - "If you really want to see urban sprawl, take a look at London." (Robert Bruegmann, Forbes)

"While we’re on the subject...." - "News of this new coalition of leading authorities and distinguished leaders has been promoted on the website of the American Medical Association and been greeted with considerable fanfare within the healthcare industry and the Washington political scene, while the public remains largely unaware of what’s up. But because it’s likely to impact each and every one of us in some way, this new group deserves a mention." (Junkfood Science)

"Scientists warn new EU rules threaten MRI scans" - "LONDON - New European Union safety rules, designed to safeguard workers, would jeopardize the use of MRI scanners in hospitals, leading scientists said on Monday.

The European Society of Radiology said new scientific evidence showed the limits set in the EU Physical Agents Directive were impractical, since they would be routinely exceeded by workers close to magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanners.

"The values described in the directive would be exceeded in every use of MRI," Gabriel Krestin, professor and chairman of the Department of Radiology at Erasmus University in the Netherlands, said in a statement.

"We would have to use other forms of scanning, such as X-rays, which are known to be harmful. Research would also be severely curtailed, since it is often conducted with much stronger magnetic fields than those used in clinical practice." (Reuters)

"You are not a cell in a test tube" - "This recent scare in the news is one of hundreds on my stack to talk about, but a surprisingly common sense, snarky little article appeared this morning urging a healthy dose of skepticism. It makes a fun way to segue into the science. He is talking about the recent story reported by the BBC, and repeated throughout the media, telling consumers that “worrying levels of the cancer-causing chemical benzene” had been found in soft-drinks." (Junkfood Science)

"A physics teacher begs for his subject back: An open letter to the AQA board and the UK Department for Education" - "I am a physics teacher. Or, at least I used to be. My subject is still called physics. My pupils will sit an exam and earn a GCSE in physics, but that exam doesn’t cover anything I recognize as physics. Over the past year the UK Department for Education and the AQA board changed the subject. They took the physics out of physics and replaced it with… something else, something nebulous and ill defined. I worry about this change. I worry about my pupils, I worry about the state of science education in this country, and I worry about the future physics teachers — if there will be any." (Wellington Grey)

"Replacing lab time with debate puts pupils off" - "The controversial reform of science lessons to make them more popular has had the opposite effect, leaving pupils less interested in the subject than they were under the more fact-based curriculum. Attempts to make science more exciting and relevant through debates about global warming, genetic engineering and nuclear power led to significantly fewer teenagers wanting to study it further, according to the report on a three-year pilot of the "21st century" science GCSE courses introduced last September." (London Telegraph)

"Adult prejudices are corrupting curriculum" - "The school curriculum has become estranged from the challenge of educating children. Issues that are integral to education have become subordinate to the imperative of social engineering and political expediency. Schools have become a battle-ground for zealous campaigners and entrepreneurs to promote their message." (Frank Furedi, London Telegraph)

"School curriculum corrupted by politics" - "The school curriculum has been corrupted by political interference, according to a new report from independent think-tank Civitas. The traditional subject areas have been hi-jacked to promote fashionable causes such as gender awareness, the environment and anti-racism, while teachers are expected to help to achieve the government's social goals instead of imparting a body of academic knowledge to their students." (Civitas)

"Science and the State" - "Roughly one-third of the total dollar amount of research and development in the U.S. flows through or is funded by the state. Estimates of government funding in other nations range from one-fourth to three-fourths of total R & D spending.

Governments all over the world massively finance, control, and regulate science and technology. They do this (i) by levying taxes and funneling the money to favored projects, (ii) by powerful laws, orders, and directives, (iii) by tying science and technology into such political concerns as the military, energy, and the environment, (iv) by favoring and supporting the influence of some scientists and not others within scientific communities, (v) by supporting some interest groups and not others, and (vi) by glossing over the whole process of power by using various media to feed the public distorted views of the science and state alliance.

Can such a widespread state-controlled method of prodigiously funding science and technology be fundamentally mistaken? Can so many human beings in so many nations be investing in science and technology projects in the wrong way, in a way that destroys value rather than creating it, in a way that destroys wealth rather than creates it, in a way that destroys lives rather than saving them? Unfortunately, the answers to these questions are "Yes." (Michael S. Rozeff, Lew Rockwell)

Sadly missed: "Weatherman Augie Auer dies" - "Former MetService chief meteorologist Augie Auer died suddenly in Melbourne last night. Prof Auer was in Melbourne celebrating his 67th birthday and 35th wedding anniversary with wife Susan and family. It is believed he died of a heart attack." (Stuff.co.nz) | Weather man Augie Auer remembered (One News)

Flashback: Global warming debunked - Climate change will be considered a joke in five years time, meteorologist Augie Auer told the annual meeting of Mid Canterbury Federated Farmers in Ashburton this week. (Timaru Herald)

"Ice ages dried up African monsoons" - "When ice ages held Europe in their grip, Africa also felt the pinch - though in a different way.

It has long been suspected that there is a connection between the west African monsoon and climate at higher latitudes - especially over geological timescales, says David Lea at the University of California, Santa Barbara. "But until now, there hasn't been enough supporting evidence." Now Lea, with team leader Syee Weldeab and colleagues, has reconstructed the most detailed history of the monsoon yet, spanning 155,000 years and two ice ages.

The team analysed the amount of barium in plankton shells found in an ocean sediment core drilled beneath the Gulf of Guinea. Barium is found in freshwater run-off from the river Niger, says Lea, and is a gauge of past run-off levels and monsoon intensities. When the northern latitudes were frozen over, monsoon rains were much weaker, only gaining strength again when the temperatures in the north increased, the team found." (NewScientist.com news service)

"Comment In February 2007 issue Of The Bulletin Of The American Meteorological Society On Attribution Based On Model and Observation Intercomparisons" - "There was a very interesting Comment published in the February 2007 issue of the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society. It is entitled A. T. J. de Laat, 2007: Mixing Politics and Science in Testing the Hypothesis That Greenhouse Warming is Causing a Global Increase in Hurricane Intensity Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society Volume 88, Issue 2 (February 2007) pp. 251–252 DOI: 10.1175/BAMS-88-2-251 [pages 251-252].

The paper is discussing recent claims on the attribution of hurricane intensity to global warming, but the discussion by A.T.De Laat is applicable to the conclusions based on any result of the multi-decadal global model predictions reported in the 2007 IPCC Statement for Policymakers." (Climate Science)

Uh-huh... "Gore's soon-to-be 'green' home" - "Al Gore, the environmental activist stung by criticism over his house's energy efficiency, said Friday that renovations are nearly complete to make it a model "green" home." (Associated Press)

"Adventures in Global Warming" - "Once upon a time there was a very mean witch who lived in a sunny and prosperous country which she called Amerika (I don’t know why she always spelled it with a ‘k’, but that’s another story…)

She was very angry and very depressed because the vast majority of the citizens of this fair country seemed to be quite happy. And happy is to a wicked witch what oil is to water. (Two other favourite topics we’ll return to at a later time…)

To continue. The people lived happy lives with loving families (about 2.3 children on average) in comfortable large houses on leafy green streets in peaceful low-crime neighborhoods that they called suburbs. (Clearly they didn’t live in Europe.)

They commuted to work in large safe vehicles (she pejoratively labelled them ‘gas guzzlers’). They took vacations by flying all over the place in big shiny jet planes. And they seemed to be having so much fun that just about everyone else in the world wanted to come live with them -- either legally or illegally.

The more these innocent free-loving people seemed to be having fun, the madder the wicked witch became.

Then one day, the wicked witch had a marvellous idea! She could stop these happy souls from having so much fun almost overnight. Why, she could make their lives downright miserable. And better still, she could make them even feel guilty over how they were living their lives. Wow." (Terry Easton, Human Events)

"Cat-Scratch Fever" - "The maddening thing about global warming – or climate change, to use the all-encompassing term - is that it can be used to explain just about any phenomena at any time. Whether it’s forest fires, disappearing honeybees, a warm day in February, or a stick of gum that melted in one’s pocket, amateur climatologists everywhere are quick to chalk it all up to manmade global warming. From the way they describe it, the signs of our imminent doom are everywhere." (Matthew Bastian, Conservative Voice)

<chuckle> "Climate of ignorance" - "AMONG the Bush Administration's favorite tactics to avoid action on problems facing the country has been to simply deny there is a problem or to claim that solutions to contentious issues put forth by others are based on "junk science."

Take climate change.

After years of denial, only recently has President Bush formally acknowledged that climate change - increasing temperatures, rising oceans, and dangerously erratic weather brought on by carbon pollution - is the threat to the planet that reputable scientists report.

But last week, on the same day Mr. Bush was putting forth a new initiative to seek a global consensus on limiting greenhouse gases, one of his administration's top scientists stuck his head in the sand publicly by doubting whether global warming is a "problem we must wrestle with."

Michael Griffin, administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, whose satellites collect much of the nation's data on climate change, said that while he believes a warming trend exists, people are "arrogant" to think anything can - or should - be done about it.

His statement indicates that Mr. Griffin, who has six college degrees in the sciences, does not fully grasp the threat climate change poses to mankind or, worse, that he has adopted a "what, me worry?" attitude." (Toledo Blade)

Hmm... Griffin has six college degrees in the sciences but supposedly has less grasp on the topic than keyboard jockeys with none? Right...

"Book Review: Unstoppable Global Warming -- Every 1,500 Years" - "'Unstoppable Global Warming -- Every 1,500 Years' written by S. Fred Singer and Dennis Avery, Rowman and Littlefield Publishers, Copyright 2007, Reviewed by Michael R. Fox Ph.D." (Hawaii Reporter)

"Reinventing Kyoto" - "The international treaty for cutting greenhouse gases is a bust, and Bush's approach will do little to help." (LA Times)

"Welcome to the post-Kyoto era" - "The Kyoto accord will survive as a rallying point for environmentalists. But as a relevant policy instrument, it effectively died this week at a seaside German resort.

If nothing else, the G8 agreement on climate change put an end to the aggressive push by one-note environmentalists -- such as Al Gore and Stephane Dion - to impoverish Western economies by insisting they meet arbitrary emission targets by 2012. From now on, international leaders will be looking for bigger cuts than those mandated under Kyoto, but within more workable deadlines -- 50% by 2050 being one benchmark under discussion." (National Post)

"Why It's Not Possible To Estimate 'Mean Global Temperature'" (.pdf) - "IPCC expert reviewer, Dr Vincent Gray explains why It is quite impossible to obtain a statistically or scientifically acceptable estimate of mean global temperature or its variability over time, from readings on the earth’s surface." (Climate Science NZ)

"No Easy Answers for Global Warming, MIT Professor Says" - "Carl Wunsch, professor of physical oceanography at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, told CNBC’s “Squawk Box” that the debate about global warming can point out risks, but assertions of impending catastrophe can’t be proven with mathematical certainty.

“Carbon dioxide is part of a very complicated feedback system,” Wunsch said Monday. “Assertions that you can show that carbon dioxide change led, or lagged, temperature change proves that there is, or is not, a human component is absolute nonsense. It’s much more complicated than that.”

He said computer models can underscore risks, but can’t be used to made definitive predictions." (CNBC)

"Ban Ki-Moon Calls For New Thinking On Solutions To Climate Change Problems" - "The world needs “new thinking and a new inclusiveness” to tackle the perils of climate change, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said today, marking World Environment Day with a call for urgent global action that takes into account the needs of the world’s least affluent countries." (Press Release: United Nations)

Post caught: "The Details Of Kyoto" - "The June 5 World News article "China Outlines Modest Environmental Goals" asserted that the "Bush administration has refused to ratify" the Kyoto Protocol. The Constitution vests 101 individuals with roles in forming treaties, one of whom is the president. Pursuant to Article II, Section 2, the president is limited to making agreements; he has no constitutional role in ratification." (Christopher C. Horner, Washington Post)

"Top geoscientist debunks climate change" - "Professor Ian Plimer has often trodden on political corns and challenged sacred cows in education. He made it clear to a mining forum that he considers climate change is an exaggerated issue that will cause more harm than good, particularly among poorer nations." (Ross Louthean, Mineweb)

"More Dissent on Global Warming" - "Though the fear of man-made global warming has come to dominate our cultural discourse, the science behind the scare is looking increasingly uncertain. David Evans is representative of scientists who have become disillusioned with the theory that industrial carbon dioxide emissions are the root cause of global warming: as he points out, the computer models don’t seem to fit the data, while at the same time evidence is mounting in favor of alternative hypotheses, like the idea that climate change may be caused in large part by fluctuations in solar radiation. A series of articles by Lawrence Solomon, who has profiled prominent climate-change dissenters, demonstrates that Evans is hardly alone—and calls into question the often-parroted assertion that there is some sort of scientific “consensus” on the issue (whatever that might mean)." (Kevin Shapiro, Commentary Magazine)

"Southeast Asia battles dengue surge, climate fears" - "JAKARTA - Southeast Asian nations are battling a surge in dengue cases, amid signs that climate change could make 2007 the worst year on record for a disease that often gets less attention than some higher-profile health risks. The spread of dengue, which is transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito and is endemic in much of the region, has also accelerated in recent years due to increasing urbanisation and travel or migration within the region, experts say." (Reuters)

"Warming threatens Arctic way of life" - "TROMSOE (NORWAY): Hundreds of thousands of indigenous people living in the Arctic region may have to abandon their traditional way of life if global warming is not halted, indigenous community leaders warned this week." (AFP)

"As world fears warming, some tout its benefits" - "QAQORTOQ, Greenland - The biggest island in the world is a wind-raked place, gripped by ice over four-fifths of its land, prowled by polar bears, its coastlines choked by drifting icebergs and sea ice. Many of its 56, 000 people, who live on the fringes of its giant ice cap see the effects of global warming - and cheer it on." (Washington Post)

"May 2007 was 0.35 C cooler than January 2007" - "UAH data show that May 2007 was 0.35 Celsius degrees cooler than January 2007. This temperature difference equals to the hypothetical global warming trend predicted for two or three decades. Nature is nevertheless able to make such a change within four months. Have you noticed that the Earth was 0.35 C cooler than in January? I have not. Moreover, I can show you that you couldn't have either. May 2007 was also cooler than September 1980 and many other months when you were much younger." (The Reference Frame)

"Big eruptions could cool off human race for long haul" - "Earth is pocked with giant craters that are reminders of a natural hazard that has happened before, and hopefully won't happen again any time soon -- the "super eruption." (Alaska Science)

"Global Warming Not Behind Kilimanjaro Meltdown" - "It's bad science to use Africa’s Mount Kilimanjaro as a poster child for global warming’s nefarious effects, two researchers say, pointing to other mechanisms causing the melt of the tropical glacier at the mountain’s summit." (LiveScience) | The woes of Kilimanjaro: Don't blame global warming (University of Washington)

"A Recent Paper On Snow Cover Trends In South America" - "There is an interesting paper in the Journal of Climate (and thanks to World Climate Report for alerting us to it) on snow cover trends in South America. This is a topic you do not hear much about." (Climate Science)

"A return to the Dust Bowl days" - "LOS ANGELES - The United States is facing a drought that could end up being worse than that of the Dust Bowl years of the Great Depression." (Independent)

"Impact of Desert Dust Radiative Forcing on Sahel Precipitation - A New Research Paper" - "A valuable new paper has appeared on the role of dust within the climate system. A significant portion of this dust results from human mismanagement of semi-arid landscapes." (Climate Science)

"Dick Armey: Gore's crusade against global warming built on 'romantic errors'" - "Former House Majority Leader Dick Armey has launched a campaign against what he calls Al Gore's "bad science" and "harmful" proposals to fight global warming. Armey says the former vice president's popularity in Hollywood makes his ideas more dangerous than ever." (OneNewsNow.com)

Hmm... "Denver targets global warming" - "Denver is gearing up to fight global warming, and residents may soon be asked to make personal sacrifices to help save the planet." (Rocky Mountain News)

... 9 of 12 warmest years for Denver occurred before 1955... | Denver's Latest Spring Freeze

"Denver's global warming plan gets some heat" - "People around the country accused Denver of embracing a "crackpot" scheme to fight global warming Monday, after the city's plan drew widespread attention on the Internet. The reaction was to a Rocky Mountain News story that detailed some of the proposals in Denver's Climate Action Plan, which aims to cut the city's output of gas emissions linked to global warming." (Rocky Mountain News)

"Record low hit in Springs; snow in high country" - "The temperature in Colorado Springs hit a record low of 37 degrees overnight, breaking a record of 38 set in 1906, according to the National Weather Service. The weather service’s official point of reference is the Colorado Springs Airport, and temperatures were actually lower elsewhere in the region." (The Gazette)

"Record snowfall brings best year on record for Whistler" - "A blockbuster summer followed by the highest number of winter visitors since 9/11 have combined to give Whistler its best year on record, Tourism Whistler announced Thursday. Mother Nature helped by delivering a record-breaking snowfall last November which continued to accumulate to more than 14 metres (46 feet) over the winter -- more than 40 per cent above the average." (Vancouver Sun)

"Pub patio heaters for smokers will produce 'as much pollution as a small city'" - "Patio heaters installed by pubs to keep smokers warm on chilly nights could soon produce as much carbon dioxide as a small city, it has been claimed. Next month's smoking ban has triggered huge demand for the gas-fired heaters from pubs, restaurants and clubs creating legal outdoor smoking areas. But according to experts, a single heater releases more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere each year than the average fuel-hungry "Chelsea tractor" - a large 4x4 car." (Daily Mail)

Dubious claim: "Britons Happy to Pay for Carbon Cuts - Ofgem Survey" - "LONDON - Even those Britons who are sceptical about the effects of climate change and efforts to fight it are happy to pay more for their energy to help cut carbon emissions, according to a study published on Monday." (Reuters)

"70-Plus Groups Confront Caterpillar on Eve of Shareholder Meeting" - "Caterpillar Urged to Abandon Global Warming Position that Harms Poor, Stockholders" (National Center)

"Rushed climate change policy risks disaster, say farmers and business" - "A group representing much of New Zealand's productive sector says the Government is risking disaster in its hasty attempts to design a greenhouse gas emissions trading scheme." (NZPA)

"Researchers examine carbon capture and storage to combat global warming" - "While solar power and hybrid cars have become popular symbols of green technology, Stanford researchers are exploring another path for cutting emissions of carbon dioxide, the leading greenhouse gas that causes global warming." (Stanford University)

Red Ken: "Livingstone lends support to Tory tax on frequent flyers" - "London mayor Ken Livingstone has backed a Conservative proposal to impose carbon taxes on frequent flyer holidaymakers." (Guardian Unlimited)

"Ethanol to Take 30 Pct of US Corn Crop in 2012 - GAO" - "WASHINGTON - Almost a third of the US corn crop will be used in five years to produce fuel ethanol, possibly raising animal feed costs for farmers and meat prices for consumers, a new government report warned Monday." (Reuters)

"More ethanol means more corn -- and more water pollution" - "CHARLESTON, Ill. — Kayaking in green algae is not Ron Easter's idea of the pleasant outing he seeks as he sets out three or four evenings a week to paddle the Embarras River in the farmlands of eastern Illinois. But on journeys up the Embarras last summer, algae are what Easter, 52, a high school biology teacher, found himself gliding through. "You wonder what is washing off those farm fields," he said while pulling his kayak out of the river recently. What is washing off those fields is nitrogen and phosphorus from fertilizers applied in ever-increasing amounts to grow more corn to fuel the ethanol boom." (Bill Lambrecht, St Louis Dispatch)

"China May Stop Ethanol Production From Corn" - "BEIJING - Beijing may ask China's four authorised fuel ethanol plants to gradually shift away from using corn as a raw material, Xinhua news agency said." (Reuters)

"Scotland's future's green, but is it golden?" - "THE golden yellow carpet which stretches across large swathes of Scotland's farmland every spring ought to be a symbol of the vibrant future for the agricultural community.

Oil-seed rape is a key part of the biofuels revolution sweeping the globe, providing oil that can be easily turned into biodiesel. Within a few short years, enthusiasts believe, Scottish farmers will be growing millions of gallons of fuel to power the nation's cars, transforming the rural industry.

However, the reality may prove otherwise. Agriculture groups and environmental bodies, along with rapeseed farmers, have told The Scotsman they believe the idea of a national biodiesel industry is a pipe dream, a supposedly green initiative which may wreak untold ecological damage." (The Scotsman)

"Safe cars versus fuel efficiency? Not so fast." - "As Congress eyes a boost to fuel-economy standards, auto industry hints that safety could be compromised. Some experts disagree." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"Govt Inaction May Kill Off UK Nuclear Power - Poyry" - "LONDON - Nuclear power could disappear in Britain because the government failed to give the technology enough support in last month's Energy White Paper, according to a report by Poyry Energy Consulting published on Monday." (Reuters)

"American Buys Slices of South America" - "The American multimillionaire who founded the North Face and Esprit clothing lines says he is trying to save the planet by buying bits of it. First Douglas Tompkins purchased a huge swath of southern Chile, and now he's hoping to save the northeast wetlands of neighboring Argentina." (AP)

"Technion architects turn dew into clean water" - "A low-tech way to turn dew into fresh, usable water has been developed by two architects at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology. Inspired by the dew-collecting properties of leaves, the invention can extract a minimum of 48 liters of fresh water from the air each day. Depending on the number of collectors used, an unlimited daily supply of water could be produced even in remote and polluted places. Their invention recently won an international competition seeking to make clean, safe water available to millions around the world." (Jerusalem Post)

"Tsunami siren stirs anger in Aceh" - "Residents near the capital of Indonesia's Aceh province have disabled a tsunami warning system. The residents cut the power to the siren on a tsunami warning tower by throwing rocks at it. They were angered by a false alarm that sent thousands of people in the capital and a nearby area rushing from their homes to higher ground on Monday." (BBC)

"Rice Engineered to Carry Cholera Vaccine" - "A team of Japanese researchers has developed a type of rice that can carry a vaccine for cholera, a step that could one day ease delivery of vaccines in developing countries." (AP)

"Study: GM Crops Help Increase Productivity" - "U.S. scientists have determined genetically modified crops can contribute to increased productivity in sustainable agriculture. The study, conducted at the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis at the University of California-Santa Barbara, analyzed environmental impact data from field experiments involving corn and cotton plants with a Bt gene inserted for its insecticidal properties." (Post Chronicle)

"New GM Crop Containment Strategy Offered" - "U.S. plant geneticists say they may have solved the problem of genetically engineered or modified agriculture crop genes leaking into the environment. Rutgers University Professor Pal Maliga and research associate Zora Svab advocate what they say is an alternative and more secure means of introducing genetic material into a plant." (Post Chronicle)

June 11, 2007

"Dan Walters: U.S. judge stops state thievery" - "The state's habitual seizure of supposedly unclaimed property in bank and stock brokerage accounts, safety deposit boxes and other repositories of wealth has always been more than a little questionable.

The theory of "escheat," as it's called, is faintly medieval, assuming that idle property can be taken by a king for his personal use by divine right, a distant cousin of the doctrine of "eminent domain" under which property may be taken for public use.

California, however, refined it into a lucrative source of income, even making it easier to seize property when the state's budget was, as it often is, out of balance." (Sacramento Bee)

"Life After Kelo" - "Friday, June 8, 2007 Nearly two years later, how goes the fight for eminent domain reform?' (Duncan Currie, The American)

"Chlorine in pools may hold increased asthma risk" - "SWIMMING in chlorinated pools may increase a child's risk of developing asthma, an alarming new study has revealed.

Despite traditional advice that swimming is beneficial for young asthmatics, researchers believe that high exposure to indoor chlorinated pools early in life may actually cause the respiratory disease." (Sunday Telegraph)

"Britain Sees Sharp Drop in Dioxin Levels in Soil" - "LONDON - Britain's Environment Agency said on Thursday a national soil and plant survey had shown contamination by cancer-causing dioxins had dropped by around 70 percent in the past 20 years." (Reuters)

Read: allegedly cancer-causing... there's still no such evidence in human exposure. In fact chloracne is the only known effect of quite large dioxin exposure and, as the Russians found out, it is not a particularly useful poison.

"Toxic pollution at its lowest for 100 years" - "Britain’s green and pleasant land has just got that bit pleasanter, researchers have concluded after measuring pollution levels. Levels of a group of toxic chemicals polluting gardens and fields have fallen to their lowest point for more than 100 years, a nationwide survey has revealed. Emissions of dioxins from factories and power plants have been stemmed so effectively by bans and caps that contamination levels in soil have fallen for the first time since the Industrial Revolution." (London Times)

"We all shall have a disease...or two or three" - "Over the past fifty years, how our culture has come to view health and illness has made a major shift. What was once considered normal human events and common human conditions — birth, aging, menopause, alcoholism and obesity — are now viewed as medical afflictions." (Junkfood Science)

"UN links industrial trans fats in food supplies with heart attacks" - "The Pan American Health Organization, a regional arm of the United Nations World Health Organization, called today for the elimination of industrial trans fats from food supplies throughout the Americas in order to prevent heart attacks." (Mercopress)

"Calorie density key to losing weight" - "Eating smart, not eating less, may be the key to losing weight. A year-long clinical trial by Penn State researchers shows that diets focusing on foods that are low in calorie density can promote healthy weight loss while helping people to control hunger." (Penn State)

"Not so fast — details of weight loss success tell a different story" - "The message to fat people this week has been clear: there’s no excuse for not losing weight and keeping it off. According to news reports, a new government study had shown that long-term weight loss is not only possible, but many are doing it, and those who think otherwise "are just plain wrong."

Had this single study actually disproven a century of research, and the findings of every independent expert review of the evidence, showing that diet and exercise don’t work longterm?

Afraid not. This study not only didn’t prove any of those claims, but its findings suggest that serious harm may be resulting from the national obsession with thinness and frenzy to lose weight — and were in evidence long before the government launched its all out war on obesity." (Junkfood Science)

"Doctors — forced into becoming lifestyle police" - "If government agencies and the American Medical Association get their way, doctors and pediatricians will be compelled to police the behaviors of children and families to make sure they comply with the obesity initiatives of the world’s most influential interest groups." (Junkfood Science)

"Friday Funny: Toebesity!" - "From the wacky obesity news file: Toebesity! It seems nothing has escaped the obesity crisis. Apparently, fat toes are simply unacceptable in certain fashion circles. But ... get this ... surgeons are actually performing weight loss surgery on toes!" (Junkfood Science)

"Sugary drinks tied to extra pounds in preschoolers" - "NEW YORK - Preschool children who are regularly given sugary drinks between meals are more likely to be overweight than their peers, new study findings suggest. The "empty" calories from sugar-sweetened sodas and fruit drinks have been blamed for contributing to childhood obesity, but not all studies have found evidence to support that claim." (Reuters Health)

"Wacky Diet Update — Everything old is new again...." - "There have been more wacky diets in the news lately — none of them are actually new, but are just the latest renditions of fads we’ve seen come and go." (Junkfood Science)

"The mysterious case of men strickened by weakness" - "How much weight can a fit man safely lift? It would, of course, vary considerably depending upon the situation, conditions, distance, duration and the size and strength of the man." (Junkfood Science)

"Divers dismantle artificial tire reef" - "FORT LAUDERDALE, Florida -- Divers began removing up to 2 million old tires from the ocean floor Monday after a plan in the 1970s to create the world's largest artificial tire reef became an ecological disaster.

The well-intentioned idea was to create new marine habitat and alternate dive sites. The plan also served to dispose of tires that were clogging landfills.

But little sea life formed on the tires dumped about a mile offshore in 1972. Some of the bundles bound together with nylon and steel have broken loose and are scouring the ocean floor and washing up on beaches. Others are wedging up against the nearby natural reef, blocking coral growth and devastating marine life." (AP)

"It's Not Easy Pleasing Greens" - "Do environmentalists oppose pollution or capitalism?" (Collin Levy, Wall Street Journal)

"Big increase in hurricanes is not caused by global heating, say scientists" - "Hurricanes in the Atlantic are increasing because of natural weather patterns rather than global warming, a study has concluded." (The Times)

"Dissidents Against Dogma" - "We should never be more vigilant than at the moment a new dogma is being installed. The claque endorsing what is now dignified as "the mainstream theory" of global warming stretches all the way from radical greens through Al Gore to George W. Bush, who signed on at the end of May. The left has been swept along, entranced by the allure of weather as revolutionary agent, naïvely conceiving of global warming as a crisis that will force radical social changes on capitalism by the weight of the global emergency. Amid the collapse of genuinely radical politics, they have seen it as the alarm clock prompting a new Great New Spiritual Awakening.

Alas for their illusions. Capitalism is ingesting global warming as happily as a python swallowing a piglet. The press, which thrives on fearmongering, promotes the nonexistent threat as vigorously as it did the imminence of Soviet attack during the cold war, in concert with the arms industry. There's money to be made, and so, as Talleyrand said, "Enrich yourselves!" (Alexander Cockburn, Counter Punch)

"Whether Vanes" - "The NASA administrator who strayed from the true path on global warming has recanted his skepticism. Is the debate really over, or are those who question warming orthodoxy the ones being silenced?" (IBD)

"A convenient untruth: how Green tyranny turns up the heat" - "'THERE is very important climatic change going on right now, and it's not merely something of academic interest. It is something that, if it continues, will affect the whole human occupation of the earth - like a billion people starving. The effects are already showing up in a rather drastic way." Wow! Scary, or what?

Well, actually, not very. That apocalyptic warning was conveyed in an article in Fortune magazine in 1974, on the alarming phenomenon of global cooling and an imminent new Ice Age. The American Institute of Physics awarded the magazine a Science Writing Award. By last year, Fortune's doomsday scenario had discernibly altered to: "The media agrees with the majority of scientists: global warming is here. Now, what to do about it?" (The Scotsman)

"Three Presentations On Climate Science In Germany" - "This week and early this coming week, I am giving three talks on climate science." (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

"Salty oceans provide early warning for climate change" - "Monitoring the saltiness of the ocean water could provide an early indicator of climate change. Significant increases or decreases in salt in key areas could forewarn of climate change in 10 to 20 years time. Presenting their findings at a recent European Science Foundation (ESF) conference, scientists predicted that the waters of the southern hemisphere oceans around South Africa and New Zealand are the places to watch." (European Science Foundation)

"The science of warming is far from settled" - "In today's rhetorically overheated environment, climatologists who express skepticism that global warming will bring about the apocalypse are outrageously lumped with the likes of Holocaust deniers. This is rather odd. While there's no credible evidence against the horrors of Nazi Germany, there's increasingly little evidence for the climate doomsayers. Several new findings in the scientific literature further weaken the case for atmospheric catastrophe. Ironically, these new results are appearing as both sides in Washington have decided that "the science is settled" on global warming and that it is time to move on to policy. Reality begs to differ." (Patrick J. Michaels, News & Observer)

Bringing garbage to the masses: "Push-Button Climate Modeling Now Available" - "A tool used by scientists to create climate models is about to become easier to use and available to a much wider audience. A new Web-enhanced version of the most commonly used climate modeling system will allow many more scientists - and even curious students - to test theories about the planet's climate." (SPX)

"Climate Alarmists Lose Another Piece of Evidence" - "Don't look now, but another big chunk of the "evidence" for man-made global warming suddenly disappeared. Poof! Researchers just reported that the world's most recent case of "abrupt climate change" - which occurred a mere 12,000 years ago - was probably due to a comet strike, not to "climate sensitivity."

The Younger Dryas occurred as an Ice Age was ending. As the climate began to warm, a huge and sudden rush of fresh meltwater broke out from the Great Lakes and swept out to sea. The water surge was monumental enough that the meltwater lowered the salinity of the ocean, shut down the Atlantic conveyor currents, which disperse the planet’s heat, and threw the northern hemisphere back into another thousand years of Ice Age. It raised temperatures near Greenland by a startling 15 degrees C, even as it doubled annual rainfall.

Modern climatologists have savored the Younger Dryas event as massive evidence of what comes when we push the planet’s climate too close to a “tipping point.” Further human-driven warming, they say, will make such abrupt climate changes more likely, with searing droughts, torrential rainfall, and extreme heat.

At least, that’s what the experts said until the latest meeting of the American Geophysical Union in Acapulco on May 23rd when James Kennett of the University of California/Santa Barbara presented evidence of a dramatically different cause for the Younger Dryas event: a comet that struck somewhere near the Great Lakes." (Dennis Avery, American Daily)

"More Evidence That Temperature Follows CO2 levels - You Read It Here First!" - "This is an updated entry on the relationship between the moon, CO2 levels and temperature - it brings together for the first time two strands of research and provides support for the C02 level following temperature rather than the other way around." (An Englishman's Castle)

"How not to measure temperature" - "I'm surveying climate stations of record around California and documenting their condition as part of a larger project I'm doing. You'll see more about it here in the near future." (Watts Up With That?)

"Australia's Howard Plans Asia-Pacific Kyoto Successor" - "CANBERRA - Australia's Prime Minister John Howard has called for an Asia-Pacific replacement to the Kyoto pact, naming an envoy to work with regional leaders on a new climate agreement ahead of a September summit in Sydney.

But critics said Howard, a vocal critic of the Kyoto Protocol and its European nation signatories, was trying to build a "polluters club" to deflect attention from Australia's position as one of the world's biggest per capita Greenhouse emitters." (Reuters)

"U.S. Compromise on Global Warming Plan Averts Impasse at Group of 8 Meeting" - "HEILIGENDAMM, Germany, June 7 — The United States agreed Thursday to “consider seriously” a European plan to combat global warming by cutting in half worldwide greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, averting a trans-Atlantic deadlock at a meeting here of the world’s richest industrial nations.

Leaders at the Group of 8 meeting Thursday in Heiligendamm, Germany. From left, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan, Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada, President Nicolas Sarkozy of France, President Vladimir Putin of Russia, Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, President Bush, Prime Minister Tony Blair of Britain and Prime Minister Romano Prodi of Italy.

The compromise, worked out in tough negotiations between the United States and Germany, also endorses President Bush’s recent proposal to bring together the world’s largest emitting countries, including China and India, to set their own national goals for reducing emissions." (New York Times)

"INTERVIEW - UN Hails G8 as Step Towards Global Climate Deal" - "HEILIGENDAMM, Germany - The United Nations hailed a Group of Eight plan for fighting climate change agreed at a summit on Thursday as a step towards a broader, worldwide pact by 2009." (Reuters)

"US, Russian Reticence Leaves Loophole in G8 Deal" - "HEILIGENDAMM, Germany - The agreement reached by the Group of Eight (G8) industrialised countries on halving greenhouse gas emissions by the year 2050 is only a rhetorical breakthrough, for the United States and Russia only accept "to consider seriously" to join the other group members in the effort." (IPS)

"A big step forward on climate change" - "Angela Merkel has good reason to be pleased with the outcome of the meeting of the Group of Eight leading countries she chaired this week. Her reputation as an effective conciliator and a determined negotiator has gained in lustre. Under her guidance, the G8 summit marks a turning point on tackling climate change. Whether George W. Bush meant what he signed is unclear. But this meeting marks the end of the beginning of the global debate. The US is now at last engaged." (Financial Times)

"Hot and cold on warming: Yes, it's a deal - but a toothless one" - "Did political hot air suffocate the historic agreement to curb global warming that was expected at the G-8 summit? It may seem so at first blush. But the much attenuated deal on climate change reached in Germany yesterday by the world's top industrial powers does have some merits, and it sets the stage for more substantive progress in the near future.

The ambitious vision promoted by the conference host, German Chancellor Angela Merkel - a 50 percent cut in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 and a limit to the rise in global temperature to 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit after that - vanished in a compromise forced by President George W. Bush." (Newsday)

"So is the world a better place after the G8 summit? The answer might surprise you" - "George Bush's usual attempts at stalling any significant action over climate change in Heiligendamm were weakened by the Blair-Merkel-Sarkozy united front. Geoffrey Lean and Raymond Whitaker report." (London Independent)

"Dominic Lawson: The summit designed to breathe new life into the Kyoto process has seen it expire" - "This was not so much a cold shower as a diplomatic drenching for Angela Merkel." (London Independent)

"A concession or a convenience?" - "Early this week one of Tony Blair's closest advisers on climate change was brutally frank about the risks the prime minister was taking at the G8 summit, in probably the ultimate test of his relationship with President Bush.

The British and German approach ahead of G8 was to "set the bar very high". Failure could be politically disastrous, the advisor said. He promised the British team Mr Blair would fight tooth and nail for a US commitment to join a new framework on climate change, and some acknowledgement of the need for cuts in carbon emissions of about 50% by 2050. Some will argue yesterday's result does not meet those tests." (Patrick Wintour, The Guardian)

"G8: Much Talk, Too Few Results" - "HEILIGENDAMM, Germany - This year's summit of the G8 heads of government will likely be remembered as a "how not to" organise such an event, for the contrast between the expectations it raised and its negligible accomplishments, and for its enormous security costs." (IPS)

"Comment: Bush has taken on Europe’s role as a green champion: Insists China and India join any climate alliance" - "When the history of Europe's waning pre-eminence and the rise of Asia's new superpowers is written, the German G8 summit that has just ended in the Baltic seaside town of Heiligendamm will be regarded as a momentous turning point. It will also be seen as the moment when the Western powers decided to bury their hatchets over Kyoto and start exerting pressure on their Asian challengers." (Benny Peiser, National Post)

"Bush 1, Greens 0: The president is a shrewd diplomat on global warming." - "Just call him George W. Bush, star international diplomat. Don't snicker, don't spit out your coffee. Instead, read over the final document on climate change released yesterday by the Group of Eight.

Yes, it's a major shift in how the world will address the supposed threat of global warming. It's also largely the vision put forth years ago by none other than George W. Bush--that international cowboy--even if few European politicians will admit it." (Kimberly A Strassel, Wall Street Journal)

"Challenge is how to include China and India" - "The challenge facing G8 nations in the next six months is how to involve China, India and other major developing countries in the United Nations effort to curb global warming, the UN's top official on climate change has said." (London Telegraph)

"Chinese envoy says climate change onus on developed countries" - "OTTAWA -- Wealthy nations such as Canada should shoulder a greater responsibility for fighting climate change than emerging economies, Chinese Ambassador Lu Shumin said at a news conference Friday.

Although China is on pace to overtake the U.S. as the largest source of greenhouse gas pollution in the world, Beijing's top diplomat in Canada said developing countries should not be responsible for cleaning up pollution that built up over decades because of growth in industrialized countries." (CanWest News Service)

"China and India reject climate change deal" - "China and India yesterday poured cold water on the climate change deal reached at the G8. They both rejected attempts by America to make environmental targets dependent on their willingness to follow suit.

China gave a studied, neutral response to the deal in Germany to move towards cuts in greenhouse gas emissions. India reiterated that it had not changed its attitude that it was up to the developed world to take the initiative.

In theory, both should have been pleased that there was no attempt to set specific targets for their own greenhouse gas emissions, which they have refused to consider. But G8 leaders implied that when negotiations on specific details began, they would have to involving developing countries, including China and India.

In an ominous response, state media in China stressed the growing closeness of the two rising economic giants of Asia on the issue. "China, India agree to work more closely," said the headline in China Daily, the international voice of the ruling Communist Party." (London Telegraph)

Proving you can fool most of the people some of the time... "Most Chinese, Indians Back Carbon Cuts - Survey" - "LONDON - Most Chinese and Indian people agree developed countries have the right to demand that emerging countries cut their carbon emissions, according to a survey by market research firm Global Market Insite.

Sixty-two percent of Chinese respondents and 63 percent of Indians said they agreed "it would be appropriate for developed countries to demand restrictions on carbon dioxide emissions from developing countries, such as China and India," despite their own governments rejecting mandatory caps." (Reuters)

"China, India insist climate change solution lies in west" - "Heiligendamm, Germany - Despite German Chancellor Angela Merkel's success in forging a deal with Group of Eight (G8) leaders to launch a renewed effort to combat climate change, she was unable to convince China and India to agree to join the effort to cut carbon emissions." (dpa)

"Major developing nations lukewarm on G8 climate goals" - "The leaders of five major developing nations on on Thursday signalled they would not bow to pressure from the Group of Eight to commit to binding targets in the fight against global warming. Brazil, China, India, Mexico and South Africa insisted ahead of talks with G8 leaders on Friday that their "different capacities and interests" must be considered when tackling climate change." (AFP)

"Kneecapping California: Guess who's trying to kill the Golden State's emissions standards." - "THERE IS a bald attempt in Congress to short-circuit California's effort to regulate tailpipe emissions -- with Democrats leading the charge. A bill from the chairman of the House energy and air quality subcommittee, Rep. Rick Boucher (D-Va. -- or is that D-Big Coal?), would halt recent moves by states to limit the emission of greenhouse gases that cause climate change. He insists, "This is not an attack on California." Color us unconvinced." (Washington Post)

"Democrats face off over emissions bill" - "California lawmakers lead opposition to a draft that would prevent states from taking tougher action than the federal government." (LA Times)

The Crone doesn't get it... "The Democrats Lag on Warming" - "When Americans elected a Democratic Congress last November, they were voting to end politics as usual and special interest legislation. On the vital issues of energy independence and global warming they are not only in danger of getting more of the same but also, unless Nancy Pelosi and other Democratic leaders step forward, winding up in worse shape than they were under the Republicans." (New York Times)

... maintaining affordability for core programs, people's standard of living and improving the environment cannot be done while rationing energy, which is the sole purpose of the great global warming scam. Everyone who looks seriously at the issue realizes we cannot tweak any global thermostat by messing with society's energy supply, which is an admission that carbon dioxide is not the controlling variable in global climate.

"PM takes shot at Bush on climate" - "HEILIGENDAMM, Germany–Calling global warming a humanitarian crisis, Prime Minister Stephen Harper voiced unusual criticism of U.S. President George W. Bush yesterday after he forced other world leaders to water down an agreement to fight climate change.

Without naming Bush, the Prime Minister said the only way to deal with the planet's environmental crunch was to establish "real, mandatory, enforceable targets" to cut the greenhouse gases." (Toronto Star)

"Quebec to Apply Canada's First Carbon Tax" - "MONTREAL - The Quebec government plans to begin applying Canada's first carbon tax this fall to help fund its plans to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases that cause global warming." (Reuters)

"EU Industry Carbon Dioxide Emissions Inch up in '06"  -"BRUSSELS - Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from industry covered by Europe's carbon market inched up last year but were more contained than the pace of economic growth, European Commission data showed on Thursday." (Reuters)

"Hungary to Take CO2 Cuts to European Court" - "BUDAPEST - Hungary will go to the European Court of Justice to fight the European Commission's cut to its carbon dioxide emissions plan for 2008-2012, the Environment Ministry said on Thursday." (Reuters)

For conflicted air enthusiasts? "Bike travel for air show encouraged" - "Free valet bike parking is available for those who choose not to drive to this weekend's California Capital Airshow at Mather Field. The bike parking area, sponsored by the Sacramento Area Bicycle Advocates, will be at Superfortress Avenue and Von Karman Street." (Sacramento Bee)

"Spain Close to Imposing Emissions Tax on Cars" - "MADRID - The Spanish government is close to imposing emissions-related taxes on cars, which will raise taxes for the more contaminating models and probably lower them for the least contaminating, the environment minister said on Thursday." (Reuters)

"US States Protest Vehicle Emissions Limit Bill" - "LOS ANGELES - Governors from eight US states Thursday protested to Congress about possible legislation that they claim will limit their efforts to cut automobile and small-truck emissions." (Reuters)

"Californian clean air standards a danger to Canadian oil industry" - "SAN FRANCISCO - Clean-air agreements signed by California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and two Canadian provinces could dramatically slow oil production in the Alberta tar sands. Ontario and British Columbia have agreed to adhere to California's low-carbon fuel standards, which means the provinces will have to curb oil production sources that create high amounts of global-warming emissions." (AP)

"Oregon Enacts Tough Renewable Power Requirement" - "LOS ANGELES - Oregon Gov. Ted Kulongoski Wednesday signed into law a requirement that 25 percent of power delivered by the state's biggest utilities be made from renewable sources by 2025." (Reuters)

"Making money may not cost the Earth" - "Climate change is becoming an increasingly hot topic for investors as the Government announced plans this week which could lead to everything we buy having a carbon label to tell us how ''green'' it is.

Under the proposals, the Government said it will agree how carbon emissions used to produce goods and services should be measured.

This is the first step towards labelling most purchases to make consumers more aware of how everyday actions may affect the world around us.

Coming back down to earth, there is nothing new about the observation that where there's muck there's brass. No wonder some of the sharpest brains in the City are now focusing on how to make money out of cleaning up the planet." (London Telegraph)

"Reuters Summit - Japan's Kansai Relies on Nuclear to cut CO2" - "OSAKA - Japanese utility Kansai Electric Power Co. aims to lower its carbon dioxide (CO2) levels from the electricity it sells by around 20 percent from 2008 through increased nuclear power generation and credit buying." (Reuters)

"Battle to clean up King Coal" - "Scrubbing carbon from coal-fired power stations is possible but pricey, The Economist reports." (SMH)

"Top scientist says biofuels are scam" - "THE government’s policy of promoting biofuels for transport will come under harsh attack this week from one of its senior science advisers. Roland Clift will tell a seminar of the Royal Academy of Engineering that the plan to promote bioethanol and biodiesel produced from plants is a “scam”." (London Times)

"Both Sides Say Project Is Pivotal Issue for Brazil" - "A proposal to build a hydroelectric dam on a river with diverse fish stocks has set off a controversy." (New York Times)

"Environmentalist Dreams of New York Rooftop Farms" - "NEW YORK - New York is better known for tall buildings and crowded streets than farms but a group of environmentalists say Gotham's rooftops could be used to grow enough vegetables to feed the entire city and reduce dependence on far-away farms." (Reuters)

"Potatoes Could Be Used for Bioplastics" - "The usual choices for potatoes include baked, mashed or french fried, but a new study suggests another option: plastic. A report by the University of Maine's Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center says the state's potato industry could benefit by becoming a producer of bioplastics, which are made from plant starch rather than crude oil and petroleum products." (AP)

"Trillions Served" - "Last week, Scientific American observed that “Genetically modified (GM) crops have spread faster in the past decade than any agricultural technology since the plow.”

That’s a clever way of putting it, but the statement should have been made stronger: GM crops have spread even faster.

The earliest ox-pulled plow was probably invented in Mesopotamia about 8,000 years ago. Centuries would pass before people in other parts of the world would adopt the fundamentals of this technology. Centuries more would pass before it would be improved upon.

GM crops, by contrast, needed only ten years between their commercial introduction and their one-billion-acre milestone in 2005. And they’re getting better all the time, as the Beatles put it roughly forty years ago today.

I don’t want to take anything away from the good old plow, but let’s face it: GM crops are to the plow what wireless email devices are to cuneiform writing on clay tablets." (Dean Kleckner, Truth About Trade & Technology)

"GMO Potato Takes Shape in EU, no French Fries Yet" - "BRUSSELS - European regulators are pushing ahead with plans to allow farmers to grow a genetically modified (GMO) potato but focusing first on its use in feed and non-food industries due to opposition from several GMO-wary countries." (Reuters)

"Chinese Consumers Wary of GMO Food - Greenpeace" - "BEIJING - Consumers in China's big cities do not welcome genetically modified (GMO) food on their table, according to a Greenpeace survey, although it also showed not many were familiar with such food." (Reuters)

June 8, 2007

"Diabetes Drug Scare or Scam?" - "Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., launched a congressional investigation this week into the popular diabetes drug, Avandia. It’s too bad his inquiry appears headed in the wrong direction." (Steven Milloy, FoxNews.com)

"Drowning Out Real Science" - "Just over 100 years ago, on May 27th, 1907, Rachel Carson was born. Her book “Silent Spring,” published in 1962, is considered by many to have launched the modern environmental movement. Inspired by concerns over misuse of the chemical DDT, the book had the specific effect of leading to the banning of DDT use in most of the world." (EcoWorld)

"DDT has been maligned by junk science" - "As the world gets ready to celebrate the 100th birthday of environmental icon Rachel Carson on Sunday, policymakers are proposing bills to honor her legacy. Yet Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., stands largely alone in efforts to stop these measures -- and he deserves much credit. Coburn apparently recognizes that the conventional wisdom about Carson's legacy is wrong, as the results of following Carson's advice have been quite grim." (Angela Logomasini, Sun Sentinel)

"Sluggish approvals blocking Africans' access to bed nets" - "Best known for supporting the indoor spraying of the controversial pesticide DDT, AFM on 23 April released a report on the WHO's Pesticide Evaluation Scheme (WHOPES). Because many governments and donor groups only buy WHOPES-recommended nets, the lengthy process of evaluation is stifling competition and handicapping the fight against malaria, says Philip Coticelli, AFM's research and communications manager." (AFM)

"If Only Greens Saw The Forest For The Trees" - "People here have no jobs," Mark Fenn admitted, after taking documentary producers on a tour of his $35,000 catamaran and the site of his new coastal home. "But if you could count how many times they smile in a day, if you could measure stress" and compare that with "well-off people" in London or New York, "then tell me, who is rich and who is poor?"

Fenn is coordinator of the World Wildlife Fund's campaign against a proposed mining project near Fort Dauphin, Madagascar. The locals strongly support the project and want the jobs, development, improved living standards and environmental quality the state-of-the-art operation will bring.

People there live in abject poverty, along dirt roads, in dirt-floor shacks, and are hardly able to afford food on their $1,000-a-year average incomes. There is little power, no indoor plumbing. The local rain forest has been destroyed for firewood and slash-and-burn farming. People barely eke out a living." (Roy Innis, IBD)

"Aid projects need more critical media coverage" - "A specialized reporting entity could expose the weaknesses in the international aid business and encourage reform." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"What is a chemical? — The DHMO story" - "All of us care about what we eat and what we feed our children. We want our food to be wholesome and nourishing — which for many means pure, natural, and free from chemicals.

Understandably, what we fear most is getting cancer from the unseen dangers lurking around us. Cancer is frightening and so are chemicals. But chemicals seem to be everywhere in our food supply and environment.

One chemical found in almost everything we eat is more dangerous than all the other chemicals combined, yet goes completely unregulated!" (Junkfood Science)

"Heart disease deaths fall, as obesity and diabetes increase, experts find" - "Epidemiologists at the University of Liverpool and the Heart of Mersey have found that approximately half the recent fall in coronary heart disease deaths in the US is due to positive life style changes and a further half to medical therapies." (University of Liverpool)

"Hormone that signals fullness also curbs fast food consumption and tendency to binge eat" - "BETHESDA, Md. (June 7, 2007) -- The synthetic form of a hormone previously found to produce a feeling of fullness when eating and reduce body weight, also may help curb binge eating and the desire to eat high-fat foods and sweets. The findings on fast food consumption and binge eating tendencies are based on a 6-week research study of 88 obese individuals." (American Physiological Society)

Another scare goes down: "Coral reveals increased hurricanes may be the norm" - "The recent increase in the number of major Atlantic hurricanes may just be a return to the norm after a period of unusually low storm frequency, say researchers." (NewScientist.com news service)

"Dirty snow may warm Arctic as much as greenhouse gases" - "Irvine, Calif., June 6, 2007 -- The global warming debate has focused on carbon dioxide emissions, but scientists at UC Irvine have determined that a lesser-known mechanism -- dirty snow -- can explain one-third or more of the Arctic warming primarily attributed to greenhouse gases.

Snow becomes dirty when soot from tailpipes, smoke stacks and forest fires enters the atmosphere and falls to the ground. Soot-infused snow is darker than natural snow. Dark surfaces absorb sunlight and cause warming, while bright surfaces reflect heat back into space and cause cooling.

“When we inject dirty particles into the atmosphere and they fall onto snow, the net effect is we warm the polar latitudes,” said Charlie Zender, associate professor of Earth system science at UCI and co-author of the study. “Dark soot can heat up quickly. It’s like placing tiny toaster ovens into the snow pack.”

The study appears this week in the Journal of Geophysical Research." (University of California - Irvine)

"Understanding what causes rain" - "Weather models are not good at predicting rain. Particularly in hilly terrain, this can lead to great damage arising from late warnings of floods, or even none at all. From June 1 to September 1, 2007 Delft University of Technology is participating in a major international experiment in Germany’s Black Forest, to learn more about what causes rain. Aircraft and an airship are to be used alongside ground-based observatories and satellites." (Delft University of Technology)

"Another New Paper That Documents Landscape Change As A First Order Climate Forcing" - "The is yet another paper which documents the role of landscape processes within the climate system (and thanks to Willie Soon for alerting us to it!)." (Climate Science)

"Global Warming as Religion and not Science" - "It was Michael Crichton who first prominently identified environmentalism as a religion. That was in a speech in 2003, but the world has moved on apace since then and adherents of the creed now have a firm grip on the world at large.

Global Warming has become the core belief in a new eco-theology. The term is used as shorthand for anthropogenic (or man made) global warming. It is closely related to other modern belief systems, such as political correctness, chemophobia and various other forms of scaremongering, but it represents the vanguard in the assault on scientific man." (Number Watch)

"An Examination of the Views of Religious Organizations Regarding Global Warming" - "Madame Chairman, I would like to thank you for having a hearing that I personally find interesting. Before I address the topic of today’s hearing, however, I must again repeat my concern that other Committees encroach on this Committees jurisdiction while we sit idly by.

We have had hearing after hearing after hearing on global warming. But we have yet to have legislative hearings on the climate bills that are supposedly the reason for this endless parade of hearings. When we considered multi-emission legislation, we had two dozen legislative hearings examining the hard questions that need to be examined when crafting legislation. If this issue is so urgent and important, why are we delaying the beginning of that process?

In fact, we would have benefited yesterday when this Committee passed a small piece of legislation on a carbon capture demonstration project for the Capitol power plant. Although many technologies were praised as possibly being used for the plant, none of those technologies actually would qualify under the bill. Yet few Senators understood this because we never had a hearing on it before voting on it. That is simply unacceptable.

I’m not surprised that no effort has been made to seriously examine the many cap and trade proposals that have been introduced. Each of these bills would have massive economic consequences. An MIT report found that the costs to energy consumers of instituting the Sanders-Boxer bill would be an amount equal to $4,500 per family and more than $3,500 for the Lieberman-McCain bill.

Each and every one of the proposals out there has warts that, if exposed in serious discussion, would make the American public think twice about these so-called solutions." (Senator Inhofe, EPW)

"Eight Months To Save The Planet?" - "The UN Climate change panel says we have eight months to save the planet from massive overheating, huge sea level increases, and millions of lost species. How is the world taking this dire news?

India says global warming is a problem for the Brits and the Americans who started it all.

Germany says it will cut its CO2 emissions by 80 percent—in 2050. For the moment, however, it plans to build another 26 power plants fueled with low-grade lignite coal, the dirtiest fuel on the planet." (CGFI)

"G8 leaders agree to climate deal" - "Leaders of the G8 nations have agreed to seek "substantial" cuts in emissions in an effort to tackle climate change. German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the G8 would negotiate within a UN framework to seek a replacement for the Kyoto Protocol by the end of 2009. No mandatory target was set for the cuts, but Mrs Merkel's preference for a 50% emissions cut by the year 2050 was included in the agreed statement. Developing nations should also cut emissions, the leaders agreed." (BBC)

"EDITOR'S NOTE: The compromise at the G8 climate summit appears to be based on the US- and Canadian-backed climate plan presented by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/05/08/asia/AS-GEN-Japan-Gas-Emissions.php The G8 has essentially agreed that any effective international framework on climate change must include China, India and other major greenhouse gas emitters from the developing world. More importantly, by offering a deal to cut global CO2 emissions by half, not just those of a handful of richer nations, the G8 has shifted international pressure away from the West and onto China and India. The BBC claim that "the compromise appears to bring Mr Bush's plan into the wider UN-brokered process - something the US had previously resisted" is a bit of a red herring as Bush's own climate initiative doesn't see itself outside the UNFCCC framework: "Under The President's Proposal, The United States Will Convene The Major Emitters And Energy Consumers To Advance And Complete The New Framework By The End Of 2008. The U.S. remains committed to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, and we expect the new framework to complement ongoing UN activity...." http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2007/05/20070531-13.html See also my assessment of the US-Japanese post-Kyoto strategy http://www.nbr.co.nz/home/column_article.asp?id=18177&cid=39&cname=NBR+Comment" (BJ Peiser, CCNet)

"World leaders strike 'huge' deal on climate" - "WORLD leaders today hailed a groundbreaking deal paving the way for a "substantial" reduction in greenhouse gas emissions with a view to halving them by 2050." (The Times)

"G8 climate deal 'doesn't go far enough'" - "TONY Blair last night hailed a compromise deal between the world's richest countries to slash greenhouse gases as "a major, major step forward" - but environmentalists said it was barely worth the paper it was written on, as there were no firm targets." (The Scotsman)

"G-8 summit isolates US on climate change" - "As Bush pushes for voluntary measures, other members endorse goal of halving greenhouse emissions by 2050." (The Christian Science Monitor)

Eye roller: "Climate Change Tracker" - "Welcome to The Co-operative Bank's Climate Change Tracker enabling you to see the potential effects of climate change in your region over the next century. The Co-operative Bank has teamed up with the UK Climate Impacts Programme (UKCIP) to bring you information about climate change. Together we’ve produced a climate change tracker, it’s free and easy to use, and allows you to see the expected climate change* and its impact in your region over the century." (The Co-operative Bank)

"Slash rather than burn" - "JOHN Howard may have to choose which election to fight. This one or the next. His problem is his taskforce's report yesterday on a carbon-trading plan to cut greenhouse gases: it's probably too late now for the Prime Minister to do much. As Labor says, if he admits cutting gases is urgent, why did he do so little before? But if Howard thinks he can still win the election, then slash he must, even if it will make no difference to any warming, given how small our emissions are. The public insists. Warming hysteria reigns. In fact, so insane is this demand for the useless that John Gava, an Adelaide University law academic, yesterday justified a carbon-trading scheme simply because elites overseas would otherwise not like us. Or, as he put it: "The reality about global warming is that we can't do much about it but that the rest of the world can damage us so very easily if we are seen to be taking a free ride." (Herald Sun)

Finally growing up, George? "Mr Green goes motoring" - "George Monbiot, the environmental campaigner, scourge of the automobile industry and champion of not owning cars, has finally bought himself . . . a car." (Sunday Times)

"Why Warmists Should Cheer Expensive Gas" - "It's one of those delicious moments when Washington's hypocrisy is on full and unembarrassed display. On the one hand, some of America's leading politicians condemn high gasoline prices and contend that they stem from "gouging" by oil companies. On the other, many of the same politicians warn against global warming and implore us to curb our use of fossil fuels that emit carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas.

Guess what: These crowd-pleasing proclamations are contradictory." (Robert Samuelson, IBD)

"Biofuel boondoggle: US subsidy aids Europe's drivers" - "A maneuver called 'splash and dash' cost US taxpayers perhaps $30 million last year, but the charges are rising fast." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"World-Wide Forests Expanding, Aided by High-Yield Farming" - "In the November 16th 2006 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, an international research team says 22 of the 50 most forested world countries have been gaining forest since 1990, reversing the trend of forest decline often associated with modern societies and rising populations." (CGFI)

"Dairy farmer campaigns for rbST use" - "I am not an activist," says Carrol Campbell, a dairy farmer from Winfield, Kan.

That is until recombinant bovine somatotropin (rbST)-free milk began appearing in dairy cases. Since then Campbell has been talking to industry leaders, legislators, his dairy cooperative, Dairy Farmers of America (DFA), and the Kansas Dairy Association about his concerns.

"I feel we have a responsibility to do something about this issue," Campbell said. "If someone asked me to come up with a list of the threats to our business, I could come up with a long one that would include environmental issues, cost of production and $4 corn. But by far and without question rbST-free milk would lead my list." (CGFI

"Bovine Growth Hormone: As harmless as Ol' Bessie herself?" - "The synthetic growth hormone is used to help cows produce milk more efficiently." (MSN Health & Fitness)

"Drink your dairy" - "Mary Smallsreed of the Tribune Chronicle addresses some of the many terms commonly used in milk marketing, such as rBGH/rbST, IGF-1 and “antibiotic-free.” (Tribune Chronicle)

"Organic Food Miles take toll on environment" - "Organic fruit and vegetables may be healthier for the dinner table, but not necessarily for the environment, a University of Alberta study shows.

The study, conducted by a team of student researchers in the Department of Rural Economy at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada, showed that the greenhouse gas emitted when the produce is transported from great distances mitigates the environmental benefits of growing the food organically." (University of Alberta)

"Pesticides choke pathway for nature to produce nitrogen for crops" - "Many farmers applying pesticides to boost crop yields may instead be contributing to growth problems, scientists report in a new study.

According to years of research both in the test tube and, now, with real plants, a team of scientists reports that artificial chemicals in pesticides – through application or exposure to crops through runoff – disrupt natural nitrogen-fixing communications between crops and soil bacteria. The disruption results in lower yields or significantly delayed growth." (University of Oregon)

"Sowing seed on salty ground: Scientists have discovered a gene that allows plants to grow better in low nutrient conditions" - "Scientists have discovered a gene that allows plants to grow better in low nutrient conditions and even enhance their growth through sodium uptake, according to a report published online this week in The EMBO Journal.

Salty soil caused by irrigation practices in arid regions has become a major agricultural problem – not only in India, China and African countries, but also around the Mediterranean and in dry regions of the USA, such as California. This is only expected to get worse in forthcoming years, as climate change leads to desertification." (European Molecular Biology Organization)

"Monsanto allowed to plant genetically modified corn in 6 of Germany's 16 states" - "BERLIN: The German government on Friday approved several new types of genetically modified corn to be planted in six of the nation's 16 states, saying tests had shown the crops would posed no danger to humans or livestock." (Associated Press)

"New study finds genetically engineered crops could play a role in sustainable agriculture" - "(Santa Barbara, California) – Genetically modified (GM) crops may contribute to increased productivity in sustainable agriculture, according to a groundbreaking study published in the June 8 issue of the journal Science. The study analyzes, for the first time, environmental impact data from field experiments all over the world, involving corn and cotton plants with a Bt gene inserted for its insecticidal properties. The research was conducted by scientists at the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) at the University of California, Santa Barbara, The Nature Conservancy, and Santa Clara University. The study is accompanied by a searchable global database for agricultural and environmental scientists studying the effects of genetically engineered crops." (National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis/UCSB)

June 7, 2007

"Fateful Voice of a Generation Still Drowns Out Real Science" - "For Rachel Carson admirers, it has not been a silent spring. They've been celebrating the centennial of her birthday with paeans to her saintliness. A new generation is reading her book in school — and mostly learning the wrong lesson from it." (New York Times)

"Sluggish approvals blocking Africans' access to bed nets" - "In the fight against malaria, long-lasting insecticidal bed nets—made from polyester or plastic and treated with insecticides—are a favorite tool. Because they can be washed and reused for years, donors such as the Roll Back Malaria Partnership push for their use." (Nature Medicine)

"Publicise the truth about DDT" - "It is good to remind ourselves that DDT was internationally used in the 1950s and 1960s during a time of unprecedented population growth and wealth creation. Wherever DDT has been used, death and disease rates have fallen." (New Vision)

"Ignore the man behind the curtain" - "There’s bad science — and we certainly see a lot of that here — and then there’s stuff so far out on the spectrum it can only be called pseudoscience. It cloaks itself in made-up science-sounding words and concepts that defy plausibility by all known laws of nature and can similarly only be called pseudojargon. We’re treading into the land of Woo, where skeptics love to go.

The most tragic aspect of junk science is how it’s used to terrify and take advantage of people, usually the most vulnerable among us. And when we’re caught up in fear, it can be just as hard to separate bad science from credible science, as it can be to detect outright pseudoscience. Moreso, when we’ve come to distrust science and fear it, too!" (Junkfood Science)

"From the reading file: The gold rush" - "Medical professionals are often asked by consumers why, if alternative modalities don’t work, do doctors continue to promote them? As we’ve noted, the alternative bunny will keep on going as long as there’s money to be made.

But an article today at Science Blogs gives a glimpse at just how staggering the amounts of money can be, and why so many continue to stay in business even after receiving warnings from government officials." (Junkfood Science)

"Sharks do too get cancer!" - "Millions of people have purchased shark cartilage supplements, believing it could help cure their cancers. Despite well-designed clinical trials showing it to be worthless, the biological implausibility that these supplements could ever even work, and that government agencies have been taking actions against shark cartilage marketers for years — beliefs in shark cartilage have continued for decades. This sadly demonstrates how people see only what they want to believe and will reject all amounts of evidence to the contrary." (Junkfood Science)

"From Australia: Another one bites the dust" - "The media has thus far ignored this study published in the current issue of the International Journal of Obesity, but it’s especially timely, what with the war on obesity heating up in Australia." (Junkfood Science)

"The secret’s out: How to reverse aging AND solve the national healthcare crisis at the same time!" - "Health Frauds just shared this timely article of a chiropractor going into the business of water....not ordinary water, but ionized alkaline water. He claims that this water could singlehandedly solve the healthcare crisis in our country. That was easy! :)" (Junkfood Science)

"Pure eating" - "As the frenzy over “healthy eating” soars, our media sells the agenda without stopping to question its soundness. Meanwhile, the UK and Australian press has been the source for some of the sanest stories, attempting to bring balance." (Junkfood Science)

"The devil’s in the details — obesity, health and food fears as marketing tools" - "Whenever we are inundated by media giving us only one storyline — especially when it plays on our fears and emotions, and makes claims that are insupportable by the best scientific evidence — we can be pretty sure there is something afoot. We are being sold something. But to figure out what that something is, we need all of our critical thinking skills." (Junkfood Science)

"Kid-friendly food not to blame" - "The war on childhood obesity is increasingly blaming the “bad” foods that kids love as being the source of the problem, regardless of what the facts of the matter might be. Specifically, efforts are focusing in on legislation calling for further restrictions on television food advertising. Hearings are coming up on July 18th at the FTC and HHS, entitled “Marketplace Responses to Childhood Obesity.” As the build-up continues, no doubt, we’ll be hearing more stories in the news about how sorry our kids are eating." (Junkfood Science)

"A few more bricks" - "...to throw at the fight against obesity. New Jersey is actually creating an office of obesity with a budget of $2 million, and New Zealand is paying celebrities to become “lifestyle ambassadors” to spread “the healthy living message.” A new product has been introduced that can sense your behavior and report on your compliance with prescribed exercise and healthy lifestyle behaviors. And coming soon to you, may be a visit from the Health Corps to whip you into shape." (Junkfood Science)

"A gutsy doctor speaks out on behalf of patients" - "A respected physician who speaks out for sound science is a valuable asset today, especially as our healthcare and our health information becomes increasingly driven by marketing and politics. This Op-Ed at ABC News is incredible, not just because of the fortitude the author demonstrates, but that it was published at all." (Junkfood Science)

"US Adopts Limits on Clean Water Law Enforcement" - "WASHINGTON - The landmark US law to fight water pollution will now apply only to bodies of water large enough for boats to use, and their adjacent wetlands, and will not automatically protect streams, the US government said on Tuesday." (Reuters)

"Al Gore Wins Spanish Prize for Climate Change Fight" - "MADRID - Former US Vice President Al Gore was awarded Spain's prestigious Principe de Asturias prize on Wednesday for his role in raising awareness of climate change." (Reuters)

"Worries About Global Warming are Growing - Survey" - "OSLO - Worries about global warming have increased around the world this year and many people want more government action to slow climate change, a survey showed on Tuesday.

Sixteen percent of more than 26,000 Internet users in 47 nations surveyed in March said climate change was a "major concern" against just 7 percent in a survey in October, according to the report by the Nielsen Company and Oxford University." (Reuters)

"Climate change 'not a priority'" - "Climate change is bottom of the priority list for Britain's largest companies, a survey of business leaders has found - and their biggest shareholders are not much more exercised by the issue, according to a report." (Financial Times)

"Global Warming Deception – Part I" - "This is the first in a series of three articles. Please also read Global Warming Deception—Part II and Global Warming Deception—Part III" (Epoch Times)

"NASA chief regrets remarks on global warming" - "In video, Griffin says he wishes he’d stayed out of debate on climate effects.

NASA administrator Michael Griffin said in the closed-door meeting Monday at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena that “unfortunately, this is an issue which has become far more political than technical, and it would have been well for me to have stayed out of it.”" (Associated Press)

"Adoption Group Says Cats Invading Shelters Due to Global Warming" - "Droves of cats and kittens are swarming into animal shelters nationwide, and global warming is to blame, according to one pet adoption group." (LiveScience)

"Sudden influx of exotic Mediterranean herons excites birdwatchers" - "A number of southern Europe's heron species have suddenly arrived in Britain, in an exotic influx which is exciting birdwatchers. Most people know of the widespread grey heron, one of our most familiar birds and also one of our tallest - it stands 3ft high, with a 6ft wingspan (and raids your garden pond). But recently, several of its continental cousins, more typical of Spain and the Mediterranean, have cropped up around the country.

At the top of the rarities list is a squacco heron, a squat but striking buff-coloured marsh bird, which has turned up on the Thames marshes east of London, at the Crossness nature reserve in Abbey Wood. It was last seen in the area in 1866." (London Independent)

"El Nino, La Nina Cycle Needs Watching - UK Experts" - "EXETER, England - 'La Nina', the abnormal cooling of Pacific Ocean surface temperatures, is as powerful as its brother 'El Nino' and the effects of global warming on their cycle need to be monitored, UK scientists said on Wednesday." (Reuters)

"UK Scientists Change Weather Measures, World Warms" - "EXETER, England - Global warming is forcing weather scientists at Britain's Met Office to change the way they compare seasonal temperatures, they said on Wednesday." (Reuters)

"World Warmer Than Average in Year to May - UK" - "LONDON - The world was slightly warmer than average in the first four months of this year, but 2007 may not turn out to be the hottest on record, Britain's official weather forecaster said on Tuesday." (Reuters)

"G-8 Discuss Global Warming as South America Ends One of Coldest Mays in History" - "Here’s a marvelous irony for you: as the leaders of the eight most developed nations meet in Germany to discuss global warming, South America has ended one of its coldest Mays in history." (News Busters)

"surfacestations.org is Ready and Your Assistance is Needed! by Anthony Watts" - "As many of you know from watching blog postings here, I have made it my mission to photograph, survey, and catalog every USHCN station for the purposes of doing a qualitative analysis on the near surface temperature data produced by the USHCN dataset.

To that end, I have created http://www.surfacestations.org which links to a separate photographic database server that I have set up. It was designed from the start to be collaborative.

Therefore I’m writing today to ask your assistance in this project." (Climate Science)

"More On Obtaining The Locations Of Global Historical Climate Network (GHCN) Sites" - "Climate Science readers are invited to submit photographs of Global Historical Climate Network Sites, as presented on May 16, 2007 in the weblog Request For Photographs Of GHCN sites - A Need For Documentation. Khishig Jamiyansharav has provided further details as to how to do this." (Climate Science)

"Insightful Discussion Of Issues With The Surface Temperature Record On The Weblog Climate Audit" - "If you do not also check the weblog Climate Audit, and are interested in the diversity of problems with the robustness of the surface air temperature data that is used to construct the IPPC estimate of global warming, I recommend that you read the series of posts on that website. It is clearly time for further detailed independent assessments of this data source, which is being used as a foundation for much of the policy actions on climate change that are being proposed." (Climate Science)

"Climate Change Battle Could Spell New Disasters" - "LONDON - Rich countries meeting in Germany this week will agree that they need to confront climate change, but unpleasant tradeoffs are already emerging." (Reuters)

"Tropical Cyclones Decreasing in China?" - "The greenhouse crowd had a field day following the active North Atlantic hurricane season of 2005, and they continue to do their best blaming any unusual tropical storm activity on global warming. Katrina remains the poster child for the link between warmer conditions and hurricanes. In the Gore film, Al explains how simple it is – warmer water will generate more storms and storms that are more powerful (and then run the Katrina footage – it seems to work every time). However, the North Atlantic hurricane season of 2006 was somewhat of a dud, so the blame machine is more than ready to go in 2007. You may have heard that tropical storm Andrea formed weeks before the 2007 official hurricane season (June 1 – November 30) got underway, and now with tropical storm Barry, we have two storms early on, and of course, global warming is to blame.

Perhaps not." (WCR)

"Are There More Storms Than There Used To Be? by Peggy LeMone" - "Dr. Lemone has graciously permitted us to post on Climate Science her weblog below from her website. Her first guest weblog appeared on Climate Science May 9 2007. The Guest weblog follows:" (Climate Science)

"A New Paper On The Role Of Land Surface Processes On Tropical Cyclone Activity" - "There is a new paper which documents the close coupling between land surface processes (in this case dust from the Sahara Desert and the Sahel in Africa, and tropical cyclone activity. The paper is Wu L. (2007), Impact of Saharan air layer on hurricane peak intensity, Geophys. Res. Lett., 34, L09802, doi:10.1029/2007GL029564." (Climate Science)

"Forget global warming: Beach property is hot" - "You'd think that the prospect of flooded coasts would mean that beachfront real estate prices would be sinking. But you'd be wrong. Fortune's Jon Birger dives into the topic." (Jon Birger, Fortune)

"The 2007 IPCC WG1 Authors are Climate Skeptics." - "The word “skeptic” has been used to either implicitly and explicitly criticize those who disagree with the IPCC perspective on the role of humans in global climate change." (Climate Science)

"A Blatant Op-Ed Post" - "I admit to being somewhat worn down by the constant bleating from the national media about how the “science is settled” about global warming; that man is responsible for the warming and if we don’t stop it now we will soon reach a “tipping point” after which runaway warming will occur with perhaps as much as 30-40% of the current species perishing in the heat. Imagine how children are perceiving this issue. According to several surveys, one of which was recently reported in the Washington Post, half of the youngsters age 7 to 11 in this survey “felt anxious about global warming — and many were losing sleep over it, convinced that animal species will soon die out and that they, themselves, will be victims of global warming.” “I worry about it,” says one young girl who has yet to lose all her baby teeth, “because I don’t want to die.” What are we doing to our kids?" (Craig James, WOODTV)

"My temper is rising. Must be global warming . . ." - "The climate debate is reaching a crisis. When I hear the words “global warming”, my temperature rises to the point where I want to reach for a gun." (Mick Hume, The Times)

"Global Warming May be Good for Greenland" - "TROMSOE, Norway - Greenland believes global warming can help attract tourists and open up the vast Arctic island to resources' exploration." (Reuters)

"Will There Be A Record Low Arctic Sea Ice Coverage This Summer? - Information On The Website “The Cryosphere Today”" - "The website The Cryosphere Today has an interesting post entitled “Will there be a record low Arctic sea ice minimum this summer?”. The current northern hemisphere sea ice area can be viewed at http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/current.365.jpg. (Climate Science)

"In Antarctica, proof that action on climate change is more urgent than ever" - "Fears that global sea levels this century may rise faster and further than expected are supported by a study showing that 300 glaciers in Antarctica have begun to move more quickly into the ocean.

Scientists believe that the accelerated movement of glaciers in the Antarctic Peninsula indicates a dramatic shift in the way melting ice around the world contributes to overall increases in global sea levels." (London Independent)

"Japan, EU Call for 50 Pct Reduction in Emissions" - "BERLIN - Japanese and EU leaders on Tuesday called for a 50 percent reduction in global greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, papering over differences in approach to global warming ahead of the G8 summit of wealthy nations starting later this week." (Reuters)

"Japan Struggles To Meet Kyoto Goals" - "Japan is trying to take the lead on climate change at this week's G-8 summit, but the world's second-largest economy is falling behind on its existing obligations to cut greenhouse gas emissions." (AP)

"The End Of The Kyoto Protocol" - "European leaders have expressed dismay over U.S. President George W. Bush's June 1 call for the creation of a long-term dialogue among the 15 largest greenhouse gas-emitting countries. The plan, they say, is another stall tactic designed to allow the Bush administration to appear as though it is trying to work with the international community on climate issues, when in reality it is not. Such action, they say, would take time and attention away from the difficult work being done on the issue via the Kyoto Protocol process.

In reality, however, the Bush plan signals the end of Kyoto -- and the beginning of a new international consensus that relieves Kyoto's pressures on governments.

The United States, China, India, Canada and Australia produce more than half of the world's greenhouse gas emissions -- and those emissions are growing. To be effective, then, any climate regime that endeavors to make real cuts in emissions must include these countries. By bringing the Pacific Rim countries into alignment on the issue, Bush has brought the United States far more power over global greenhouse gas emissions policy than Europe ever has had. With this, Bush takes from Europe its one global foreign policy success story." (Peter Zeihan and Bart Mongoven, Stratfor)

"Continental Drift, II" - "Non-alarmist, “global governance”-type followers of the Kyoto process have to love this. President Bush stunned the Europeans with his Thursday announcement, playing their game as well as they do but from a better position: US carbon dioxide emissions from 2000-2006 are flat. Europe’s are up and steadily rising, 6 years out of the 9 since Kyoto was agreed, in fact; US CO2 emissions over that same period are equally superior.

The truth which the Administration refuses to say (more than once) is that big-talking Europe is a bossy non-performer. Bush diplomatically doesn’t say so, but instead preempted a planned political trap at the G-8 talks by clearly delineating the US position, incompatible with and pulling the rug out from under G-8 president Germany’s plan. German and G-8 president Angela Merkel planned to draw the US to an event to have pies thrown at them, then strong-arm them into agreeing to something the US otherwise rejected. That is, to replicate what happened at the Earth Summit in Rio in 1992." (Chris Horner, Planet Gore)

"No Firm Climate Targets From G8, US Says" - "HEILIGENDAMM, Germany - A summit of major powers in Germany will not agree to any firm targets for slashing greenhouse gas emissions, a senior US official said on Wednesday as G8 leaders gathered on the Baltic coast." (Reuters)

"On climate change, Bush is all heart" - "Along with almost all intellectually gifted, sophisticatedly modern and environmentally conscious people, I was horrified last week when I first heard President Bush’s so-called proposals last week on global climate change ahead of the G8 summit this week in Germany.

How could he? After all the hopes placed in the world’s leadership for sensible policies to combat the greatest threat to our civilisation since Hannibal crossed the Alps? How could he let us down this time?

Of course, the reasons for my concern were somewhat different from those of the vast and expanding climate change lobby; all those hip young people from Greenpeace and all those teachers who want compulsory readings from Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth to replace morning assembly.

My concern was that, as it was initially presented, the proposals seemed to represent a genuinely alarming change of heart by Mr Bush." (Gerard Baker, The Times)

"Bush Rebuffs Germany on Greenhouse Emissions" - "ROSTOCK, Germany, June 6 — As leaders of wealthy nations converged Wednesday on a Baltic Sea resort for their annual meeting, the White House effectively derailed a climate change initiative backed by one of President Bush’s strongest European allies, Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany. The White House said it would hold firm against concrete long-term targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, a major priority for Mrs. Merkel, the host of the Group of 8 meeting." (New York Times)

"Too many climate plans for G-8, too little consensus" - "China follows US outline with program of its own. But neither one contains a specific emissions target, which Europe wants." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"Canada will not meet Kyoto targets: PM" - "BERLIN — Prime Minister Stephen Harper has told an international audience that Canada will not meet its Kyoto targets but can be a model for the rest of the world in battling climate change.

Harper blames the previous Liberal government for years of foot-dragging and says it is now impossible for Canada to meet Kyoto without destroying its economy.

But he told a German business audience Monday that his government has a solution the entire planet can follow.

The answer lies, he said, not in setting absolute greenhouse-gas reduction targets but in intensity-based ones." (CP)

"Green party proposes $50/tonne carbon tax" - "OTTAWA - A $50 per tonne carbon tax that could drive up gasoline prices by 12 cents per litre is the only way to avert a climate catastrophe, Green Leader Elizabeth May said Tuesday." (CanWest News Service)

"'Unique' Canada to Tell G8: Leaving Kyoto Can Work" - "BERLIN - Canada, which in April walked away from international targets for cutting greenhouse gases, will test the patience of major allies this week by arguing its approach can help forge a new global climate change deal." (Reuters)

"Canada's carbon dioxide 'comedy of errors' a total capitulation to climate change dogma" - "PM's summit speech shows Parliamentarians have come full circle on climate change rhetoric" (Tim Ball and Tom Harris, CFP)

"Carbon Tax Inevitable, Analysts Say" - "A tax-based approach to reducing carbon emissions "is going to happen," a panel of economists and tax analysts agreed Tuesday, differing only on whether a carbon tax or a cap-and-trade system would be the best approach." (CNSNews.com)

"Carbon trade scheme 'is failing'" - "The EU's carbon trading scheme has increased electricity bills, given a windfall to power companies and failed to cut greenhouse gases, it is claimed." (BBC)

"Calif. sees sprawl as warming culprit" - "SAN FRANCISCO — California is pioneering what could be the next battleground against global warming: filing suit to hold cities and counties accountable for greenhouse gas emissions caused by poorly planned suburban sprawl." (USA TODAY)

"Dems drafting bill that could derail state warming law" - "House Democrats, in their first draft of new energy legislation, would wipe out California's landmark global warming law -- despite their California speaker's promises that her party would use the state as a model to combat climate change.

The legislation would pre-empt California and 11 other states from implementing laws requiring automakers to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across their fleets. The bill would prohibit the Environmental Protection Agency from granting the states waivers to put their climate change rules into effect." (SF Chronicle)

From CO2 Science:

Evolutionary Adaptations to Climate Change: Can they occur rapidly enough to do any good in the face of predicted global warming?

Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week:
This issue's Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week comes from Northern Icelandic Shelf, North Atlantic Ocean.

Subject Index Summary:
Range Expansion (Plants - North America: United States, Scattered Locations): What do experimental and observational studies reveal about the nature of woody-plant range expansions across the wide expanse of the United States?

Journal Reviews:
Lowest Flows and Largest Floods of Minnesota (USA) Rivers: How have the two hydrological extremes responded to the supposedly "unprecedented" global warming of the past few decades?

The Water Status of the Canadian Prairie Provinces: Is it getting better or worse?

A 1300-Year Record of Climate Change in Northern India: What major periods of earth's climatic history does it reveal?

Water Limitations of Terrestrial Plants in a CO 2 -Enriched and Warmer World: Perception vs. Reality: What may appear to be a straightforward plant physiological consequence of reduced soil water content is not necessarily so.

Direct Effect of CO 2 vs. Indirect Effect of Projected CO 2 -Induced Climate Change on Rice Productivity in China: Which one wins?

"CO2 Cost Will Make China Curb Emissions - IEA" - "LONDON - China and India are fully aware of the risk of climate destabilisation and will seek to minimise the impact of their growing energy demand, William Ramsay of the International Energy Agency said on Tuesday." (Reuters)

"Climate Policies Can't Hurt Us - OPEC" - "LONDON - Climate change measures will not hurt big oil exporting countries, which instead will cash in on rising energy demand, said Abdullah al-Badri, secretary-general of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries." (Reuters)

"Why Is Profit a Dirty Word?" - "At a recent press conference Sen. John Kerry was upset as he snarled, "Oil companies in America are reporting record profits. Record profits." When did profit become a dirty word?" (John Stossel, Townhall)

"Climate Challenge Bigger Than Moon Shot - PG&E CEO" - "LOS ANGELES - The chief executive of California's largest electric utility said cutting global warming greenhouse gases will take more effort than the United States put into landing a man on the moon in the 1960s." (Reuters)

"States Urge US EPA to Tighten Rules on Coal Plants" - "NEW YORK - New York and 15 other states on Tuesday urged federal regulators to put teeth into a proposed pollution rule aimed at making US electric utilities reduce smog and global warming emissions when they expand or modernize their coal-fired power plants." (Reuters)

"Airlines Seek to Escape Climate-Change Dog House" - "VANCOUVER, British Columbia - International airline executives agree they are losing the public relations battle over their industry's role in global warming, but they are still grappling with how to win back public and political support." (Reuters)

"Airlines Seen Paying Billions in EU Emission Scheme" - "BRUSSELS - The cost to airlines of joining the European Union's emissions trading scheme would be 9.8 billion to 45 billion euros (US$13.3 billion to $60.9 billion) between 2011 and 2022, a study showed on Wednesday." (Reuters)

"Sooty vessels try to turn green" - "With pollution in ports a key contributor to US emissions, ferries and other harbor vessels look for new ways to operate." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"Lax CO2 Targets a Boon for Canada Oil Patch - Study" - "CALGARY, Alberta - Canadian oil sands producers may end up making a profit by meeting the federal government's greenhouse gas emission targets as new regulations mandate lower cuts in carbon dioxide output than the industry has already pledged, a study says." (Reuters)

"Energy Answer on Turkey Farms Draws Ire" - "Environmental advocates question the earth-friendliness of burning turkey waste to generate electricity." (New York Times)

"Report labels Britain's energy policy a 'mess'" - "LONDON - Britain's energy strategy is an incoherent mess which is unlikely to ensure future supplies or succeed in fighting climate change, according to a report by academics published today." (Reuters)

"Nuclear boom on the way" - "THE price of uranium – already up 85 per cent since January – could reach $US200 a pound within two years, Australia's biggest securities firm, Macquarie, says.

Analysts have revised forecasts for the nuclear fuel upwards following its dramatic run this year, driven by dwindling supplies and limited expansion opportunities." (Herald Sun)

"More EU States Wary on GMO Maize, Debate Hots Up" - "BRUSSELS - Several influential EU states have dug in their heels on whether their farmers may grow one of Europe's oldest genetically modified (GMO) crops, raising the stakes in the EU's long-running stalemate over biotech policy." (Reuters)

June 4, 2007

"Green's African Death Toll" - "May 30, 2007 -- ACTIVISTS say companies should be honest and accountable, and put people ahead of profits. But unless these common-sense guidelines also apply to nonprofit advocacy groups, corporate social responsibility will remain just another tactic for raising money and advancing political agendas.

Take the group Environmental Defense (ED), launched 40 years ago to secure a ban on DDT and, in the words of co-founder Charles Wurster, "achieve a level of authority" that environmentalists never had before. Its high-pressure campaign persuaded EPA Administrator William Ruckelshaus to ignore his own scientific panel and ban DDT in 1972.

The panel had concluded that DDT is not harmful to people, birds or the environment. That's especially true when small quantities are sprayed on walls to repel mosquitoes and prevent malaria. But ED and allied groups continued their misinformation campaign until the chemical was banished even from global health-care programs.

The activists ignored DDT's lifesaving role, and focused instead on exaggerations and outright fabrications about how massive overuse of DDT affected birds and ecosystems, as alleged in "Silent Spring" by Rachel Carson (whose 100th birthday was commemorated on Sunday)." (Paul Driessen, New York Post)

"HIV And Malaria Combine To Adversely Affect Pregnant Women And Their Infants" - "University of Toronto researchers have uncovered the basis by which pregnant women protect themselves against malaria and have also discovered how the HIV virus works to counteract this defence. The research could lead to improved vaccines for pregnant women in malaria-ravished regions." (Science Daily)

Letter of the moment: "Rachel Carson's Mixed Legacy" - "David A. Fahrenthold quoted me in his May 23 Metro article "Rachel Carson Bill From Cardin on Hold" but misunderstood my point. While one cannot blame Rachel Carson for things done in her name after her death, she was undoubtedly wrong about DDT and a host of other issues. She was known to be wrong in 1972, 10 years after "Silent Spring" was published, as the back cover of the 1972 Penguin version acknowledged." (Washington Post)

"First Large-Scale Spraying Campaign for Malaria in Senegal in 50 Years Underway" - "Yesterday marked a significant step towards reducing the burden of malaria in Senegal - the first large-scale community-based indoor residual spraying campaign was undertaken in conjunction with the distribution of 200,000 long lasting insecticide treated net's." (AFM)

"Men in Green" - "Along the malarial marshes and through the tropical lowland jungle ride Venezuela's green-uniformed soldiers of health. From their gaudy yellow trucks they dismount at the doorways of palm-thatched huts to spray walls and dark corners with DDT-guns. In two years of spraying, the malaria fighters have cleared the mosquito from 200,000 houses and all but wiped out malaria in one-third of the nation.

The campaign got started almost by chance. In the spring of 1945, Venezuela's chief malaria expert, young Arnoldo Gabaldon, was in Washington for a Pan-American health conference. At lunch one day, Dr. James Stevens (now dean of the Harvard School of Public Health) told him what DDT was doing for the Army in the southwest Pacific. Gabaldon was "terribly excited."

Back in Venezuela, Gabaldón reviewed his problem. Half of his countrymen suffered from malaria at one time or another. It broke the spirit as well as the body. "People with malaria just don't care," says Gabaldón. "They don't even care if you treat them." As a Rockefeller Foundation fellow in protozoology, Gabaldón had learned that the chronic malarial "lose even the desire to procreate." Gabaldón decided to go all out for DDT." (Time)

"We are all doomed - so what's new?" - "When was the first piece of nationwide environmental legislation passed? You might reply 1956, as a direct response to the great London smog of 1952, but normally people cite the Clean Air Act of 1968, which laid down the principle of building tall chimneys to disperse the pollution.

In fact, both dates are wildly wrong. The first nationwide anti-pollution legislation was passed in 1388, when the English Parliament, sitting in Cambridge, outlawed haphazard garbage disposal.

To prevent corruption of air and water, garbage was to be taken out of town and dealt with responsibly. If the law was disobeyed, citizens could complain to the king's chancellor, who would punish the municipal authorities. The twin problems of packaging and bin emptying have been around for some time." (London Telegraph)

"Cyclonic Storm Stalls India's Monsoon, Not Unusual" - "NEW DELHI - India's monsoon rains have been static over the southern coast since last Tuesday because of a cyclonic storm in the Arabian Sea but the situation is not unusual, a weather department official said on Monday." (Reuters)

CO2 Science Special Issue!
In a recent interview broadcast on National Public Radio's Morning Edition program, NASA Administrator Michael Griffin was asked if he was concerned about global warming. His response - "I am not sure that it is fair to say that it is a problem we must wrestle with" - prompted a prominent NASA scientist, James Hansen, to tell ABC News that Griffin's remark was "an incredibly arrogant and ignorant statement," and that it indicated "a complete ignorance of understanding the implications of climate change." Equally upset was Princeton University's Michael Oppenheimer, who said that he was "shocked" by the Administrator's statement and that he felt that he "ought to resign."

As a public service to help people better evaluate Hansen's characterization of Griffin, plus Oppenheimer's call for Griffin to resign, we are devoting this week's entire issue of CO 2 Science to a comprehensive evaluation of Hansen's 26 April 2007 testimony to the Select Committee of Energy Independence and Global Warming of the United States House of Representatives, which Hansen entitled "Dangerous Human-Made Interference with Climate." Before any more calls are made for Griffin's resignation, our critique of Hansen's testimony, linked below, should be carefully studied. It is very possible that Oppenheimer's invitation for Griffin to resign might more appropriately be extended to someone else.

Carbon Dioxide and Global Change: Separating Scientific Fact from Personal Opinion: A critique of the 26 April 2007 testimony of James E. Hansen made to the Select Committee of Energy Independence and Global Warming of the United States House of Representatives entitled "Dangerous Human-Made Interference with Climate" (co2science.org)

"On The Importance Of Regional Climate Change Projection In The Southwest U.S. — And Its Caveats by Professor Christopher L. Castro" - "Though I am not a regular contributor to Dr. Pielke’s blog, I would like to comment on some recent discussions regarding climate change projections in the southwest United States. To give some brief background on myself, I am a former student of Dr. Pielke’s and currently an assistant professor at the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Arizona. My principal interests are regional climate and mesoscale modeling." (Climate Science)

"Meteorologist: ‘Al Gore’s Global Warming is the Biggest Myth of the Century’" - "I’m sure I’m speaking for millions of anthropogenic global warming skeptics when I say that virtually nothing brightens my day more than an article written by a climate expert exposing the Global Warmingist-in-Chief, soon-to-be-Dr. Al Gore, as nothing more than a snake oil selling charlatan." (Noel Sheppard, News Busters)

"Gore's assault on reason" - "The title of Al Gore's latest book, The Assault on Reason, says it all. Illogicalities, non sequiturs, false analogies, fallacies, ad hominem (or rather ad Exxoninem) arguments all tumble forth in profusion from its pages." (Peter Foster, Financial Post)

Big dollars in scares: "HSBC in $100m climate initiative" - "HSBC is setting aside $100m (£50m) for an initiative to tackle climate change. The funding by the UK's largest bank will help charities and environmental groups to research some of the global causes and effects of climate change. The partnership will look at ways to protect the world's most important rivers and identify how cities can respond to environmental threats. HSBC also said it would create "a green taskforce", to ensure climate awareness was central to its own business. HSBC is the latest UK company to pledge changes to the way it operates in the face of calls for big business to do more to prioritise environmental concerns." (BBC)

"Nunavut MLAs condemn U.S. proposal to make polar bears threatened species" - "Nunavut MLAs unanimously passed a motion Friday opposing an American initiative to list polar bears as a threatened species under the U.S. Endangered Species Act." (CBC News)

"Freeman Dyson on global warming: video" - "In this 10-minute-long video (two parts), a prominent scientist who's followed the science of global warming from the beginning, Freeman Dyson explains why climate models have no scientific merit, why average global ground temperature is a great fiction, and what he believes the real dangers of increased CO2 in the atmosphere are. He suggests that the relatively simple solution of land use management could potentially give us the ability to control the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere at any level we'd like, and there's no need to stop burning coal and oil. In the second part he talks about stratospheric cooling." (The Reference Frame)

"No Sweat" - "Here are the facts on global warming: In the past 100 years, the average temperature of Earth has risen six-tenths of one degree. In the past 100 years, carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has increased about 80 parts per million so that it stands at about 370 parts per million. Sea levels are estimated to have risen 10 to 20 centimeters in the same time frame.

That's it. Everything else is speculation based on computer models, which several scientists say are unreliable. Think. If they can't reliably forecast the weather 48 hours in advance, it's extremely unlikely that a forecast 100 years in the future is worth even noticing." (Charley Reese, Lew Rockwell)

"Everybody Talks About the Weather; All of a Sudden, It’s Controversial" - "The daily weather forecast is rarely controversial, but the broader topic of climate change has generated no end of debate. As the network has seen its primary subject turn into a hot-button issue, it has had to grapple with how it wants to address it — and has decided not to tread gingerly." (New York Times)

True, they've become unabashed zealots.

surfacestations.org - Anthony Watts announces the start-up of surfacestations.org, an effort to catalogue microsite information for weather stations used in the construction of surface temperature histories, an effort that is obviously highly worthwhile." (Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit)

New Light on Old Fudge (Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit)

"They call this a consensus?" - "Only an insignificant fraction of scientists deny the global warming crisis. The time for debate is over. The science is settled."

So said Al Gore ... in 1992. Amazingly, he made his claims despite much evidence of their falsity. A Gallup poll at the time reported that 53% of scientists actively involved in global climate research did not believe global warming had occurred; 30% weren't sure; and only 17% believed global warming had begun. Even a Greenpeace poll showed 47% of climatologists didn't think a runaway greenhouse effect was imminent; only 36% thought it possible and a mere 13% thought it probable.

Today, Al Gore is making the same claims of a scientific consensus, as do the United Nation's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and hundreds of government agencies and environmental groups around the world. But the claims of a scientific consensus remain unsubstantiated. They have only become louder and more frequent." (Lawrence Solomon, Financial Post)

"Europeans Cool to Bush Plan on Climate Change" - "ESSEN, Germany - President Bush's plan to combat climate change got a cool reception Friday in Europe, where the European Union's environment chief dismissed it as unambitious and the "classic" US line." (Reuters)

"Bush Climate Plan: Amid Nays, Some Maybes" - "President Bush’s shift last week toward cutting worldwide emissions linked to global warming was greeted with widespread skepticism. But mixed in with the doubts was a substantial dose of support, albeit conditional." (New York Times)

"Greenhouse grandstanding just a bunch of hot air" - "Every politician eventually enjoys his 15 minutes of media popularity, and this last week U.S. President George W. Bush got his. All he had to do for it was propose that the world's 15 major producers of industrial pollution -- recently redefined to include carbon dioxide, which is not a pollutant but one of the basic conditions for life -- should meet to decide upon emissions targets. What a brilliant idea. (Irony icon.)" (David Warren, The Ottawa Citizen)

"India to Resist Bush Pressure on Global Warming" - "NEW DELHI - India, one of the world's top polluters, will not accept equal responsibility to cut emissions and combat climate change despite US President George W. Bush's proposal for a deal among top emitters, officials said on Sunday." (Reuters)

"Canada Dilutes Climate Change Tone, Backs Merkel" - "BERLIN - Canada demanded on Monday that all nations commit to ambitious cuts in greenhouse gas emissions, in a move seen as meant to shake off Ottawa's image as a climate change laggard. But Prime Minister Stephen Harper also repeated his assertion that Canada could not meet its obligations under the Kyoto protocol on climate change, a stance which detractors say puts him in the same camp as US President George W. Bush." (Reuters)

"G8: Facing Summit Failure, Germany Braces Itself" - "HEILIGENDAMM, Germany - Facing the probability that this year's G8 summit will be a failure -- mainly due to U.S. opposition to an international consensus on environmental, financial, and African cooperation issues -- the German government, host of the event, is scaling down the expectations that it helped to stir in the first place." (IPS)

"Former German Chancellor Calls For End of Media Hysteria Over Global Warming" - "Most climate change watchers are aware that leaders from the eight most developed nations will be meeting in Germany this week to discuss, among other things, issues related to global warming.

With a delicious sense of irony, former German Chancellor Helmut Schmidt put his two cents into this debate with comments that will surely not be reported by America’s alarmist media even though he was somewhat speaking to them." (Noel Sheppard, News Busters) | Helmut Schmidt on global warming (The Reference Frame)

"Warming's bad guys made good" - "The latest moves by China and Bush should be welcomed as new awareness of the need for joint action." ( The Christian Science Monitor )

"China Says EU Two Degree Warming Goal Lacks Basis" - "BEIJING - China said on Monday that an EU proposal seeking to limit global warming to 2 degrees Celsius had [no] scientific backing and needed to be studied before it was used to set policy." (Reuters)

"China balks at emissions caps" - "China's first plan to confront climate change cites growth as its top priority." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"China Says 2004 Carbon Emissions Hit 6 Bln Tonnes" - "BEIJING - China gave a rare estimate of its recent greenhouse gas emissions on Monday, showing that between 2000 and 2004 they had increased by roughly Germany's total national output of the pollutants." (Reuters)

"Indonesia World's No.3 Greenhouse Gas Emitter - Report" - "JAKARTA - Indonesia is among the world's top three greenhouse gas emitters because of deforestation, peatland degradation and forest fires, a World Bank and British government climate change report released on Monday showed." (Reuters)

"China Could Lose Western Glaciers by 2100" - "BEIJING - China's western glaciers are melting so fast that they may have largely disappeared by the end of the century, drying up parts of the rivers they currently feed, the official Xinhua agency reported on Monday." (Reuters)

"Himalayan Glaciers Resist Melting - Chinese Scientist" - "BEIJING - Glaciers in the Himalayas have not drastically shrunk despite global warming and are unlikely to melt away in coming decades, a Chinese scientist said. Zhang Wenjing, glacier expert at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, discounted previous forecasts that glaciers across western China could disappear in decades or the Himalayan glaciers could melt away 50 years, Xinhua news agency reported. "Those predictions may be excessively pessimistic," he said. "So far glaciers in the middle and eastern part of the Himalayas have not shrunk on any large scale." (Reuters)

"Experts question theory on global warming" - "Believe it or not. There are only about a dozen scientists working on 9,575 glaciers in India under the aegis of the Geological Society of India. Is the available data enough to believe that the glaciers are retreating due to global warming?

Some experts have questioned the alarmists theory on global warming leading to shrinkage of Himalayan glaciers. VK Raina, a leading glaciologist and former ADG of GSI is one among them.

He feels that the research on Indian glaciers is negligible. Nothing but the remote sensing data forms the basis of these alarmists observations and not on the spot research.

Raina told the Hindustan Times that out of 9,575 glaciers in India, till date, research has been conducted only on about 50. Nearly 200 years data has shown that nothing abnormal has occurred in any of these glaciers." (Hindustan Times)

"Scientists unravel mystery of growing glaciers" - "New research published today into climate change in Asia could explain why many glaciers there are growing and not melting. The investigation into the western Himalaya and the surrounding Karakoram and Hindu Kush mountains shows that this area could be reacting differently to global warming, the phenomenon blamed for causing glaciers to melt and shrink. Researchers at Newcastle University looked at temperature trends in the Upper Indus Basin over the past century. They found that a recent rise in winter temperatures and a cooling of summer temperatures, combined with an increase in snow and rainfall, could be causing glaciers to grow, at least in the higher mountain regions. These findings are particularly significant because temperature and rain and snow trends in the Upper Indus Basin also impact on the water availability for more than 50 million Pakistanis." (Press Association) | Mountain climate change trends could predict water resources (University of Newcastle upon Tyne)

"New climate research yields good and bad news" - "PARIS - New studies into climate change hold out contrasting news, confirming that the greenhouse effect has disrupted the global water cycle over the past century but also suggesting some coral species may adapt to the warming threat. Swiss weather researcher Kerstin Treydte and colleagues say they discovered that the last century saw the biggest increase in snowfall in central Asia than at any time over the previous millennium. The precipitation started to surge around 150 years ago, coinciding with the start of the Industrial Revolution powered by coal, gas and oil -- the biggest culprits for greenhouse gases." (AFP)

Uh-huh... snowfall has been increasing over the last century or so and this is causing the alleged retreat of central Asian glaciers... amazing.

"Predicting Fate of Glaciers Proves Slippery Task" - "Earlier this month, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) declined to extrapolate the recent accelerated loss of glacial ice far into the future (ScienceNOW, 2 February). Too poorly understood, the IPCC authors said. Overly cautious, some scientists responded in very public complaints (Science, 9 February, p. 754). The accelerated ice loss--apparently driven by global warming--could raise sea level much faster than the IPCC was predicting, they said. Yet almost immediately, new findings have emerged to support the IPCC's conservative stance." (Richard A. Kerr, ScienceNOW Daily News)

"Glaciers not on simple, upward trend of melting" - "Two of Greenland's largest glaciers shrank dramatically and dumped twice as much ice into the sea during a period of less than a year between 2004 and 2005. And then, less than two years later, they returned to near their previous rates of discharge.

The variability over such a short time, reported online Feb. 9 on Science magazine's Science Express, underlines the problem in assuming that glacial melting and sea level rise will necessarily occur at a steady upward trajectory, according to lead author Ian Howat, a post-doctoral researcher with the University of Washington's Applied Physics Laboratory and the University of Colorado's National Snow and Ice Data Center. The paper comes a year after a study in the journal Science revealed that discharge from Greenland's glaciers had doubled between 2000 and 2005, leading some scientists to speculate such changes were on a steady, upward climb.

"While the rates of shrinking of these two glaciers have stabilized, we don't know whether they will remain stable, grow or continue to collapse in the near future," Howat says. That's because the glaciers' shape changed greatly, becoming stretched and thinned." (University of Washington)

"Glacier Advance and Retreat - Another Example Of The Complexity Of This Climate Metric" - "As discussed on Climate Science, when climate metrics are investigated in detail, the reality of the real world often conflicts with the pronouncements of the climate assessments. With respect to glaciers, this mismatch between reality and the assessments has been presented before (see and see). The weblog for today provides yet another example of the incomplete information that is being communicated to policymakers and others." (Climate Science)

"Greenland's glaciers have been shrinking for 100 years: study" - "Greenland's glaciers have been shrinking for the past century, according to a Danish study published on Monday, suggesting that the ice melt is not a recent phenomenon caused by global warming. Danish researchers from Aarhus University studied glaciers on Disko island, in western Greenland in the Atlantic, from the end of the 19th century until the present day.

Using maps from the 19th century and current satellite observations, the scientists were able to conclude that "70 percent of the glaciers have been shrinking regularly since the end of the 1880s at a rate of around eight meters per year," Yde said. "We studied 95 percent of the area covered by glaciers in Disko and everything indicates that our results are also valid for the glaciers along the coasts of the rest of Greenland," he said. The biggest reduction was observed between 1964 and 1985." (AFP)

"Greenland’s Glaciers Take a Breather" - "Greenland isn’t melting as fast as we feared. It was big news when the rate of melting suddenly doubled in 2004 as ice sheets began moving more quickly into the sea. That inspired predictions of the imminent demise of Greenland’s ice — and a catastrophic rise in sea level. But a paper published online this afternoon by Science reports that two of the largest glaciers have suddenly slowed, bringing the rate of melting last year down to near the previous rate. At one glacier, Kangerdlugssuaq, “average thinning over the glacier during the summer of 2006 declined to near zero, with some apparent thickening in areas on the main trunk.” (John Tierney, New York Times)

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

"Shrinking glaciers seen as sci-fi nonsense" - "A local glacier guide is laughing off reports climate change will start to melt away south Westland's glaciers. NIWA claims even a small temperature increase will cause a noticeable shrinkage of glaciers, hitting the popular tourist towns of Fox and Franz Josef in the pocket. However, Fox Glacier Guides operations manager Kerrie Urem says Fox and Franz Josef Glaciers have been growing hundreds of metres since 1999. She says snowfall in Westland has been increasing over the past eight years, providing perfect conditions for advancing glaciers. "The scientists have been watching too many science fiction movies and should come and see for themselves what is happening in New Zealand." (Newstalk ZB)

"Antarctic Glaciers Won’t Melt" - 'Atmospheric temperature should be much higher to make continental glaciers melt, said the head of Science and Research Institute of Arctic and Antarctic Regions Ivan Frolov.

"Many hundred years or 20-30 degree temperature rise would have made glaciers melt", says the scientist. Today Greenland's and Antarctic glaciers have the tendency to grow.

Scientists have two opposite points of view concerning Earth's climate – global warming and global cooling. Mr. Frolov says cooling and warming periods are common for our planet – temperature fluctuations amounted to 10-12 degrees. However, such fluctuations haven't caused glaciers to melt. Thus, we shouldn't be afraid they melt today." (IC Russia)

"Warming Without SUVs On Neptune" - "A world that can't shut out Al Gore, environmental alarmists and hot-air celebrities can't avoid the hysterical warnings that Earth is warming. But who knew that Neptune appears to be getting hotter, too?" (IBD)

"I Was On the Global Warming Gravy Train" - "I devoted six years to carbon accounting, building models for the Australian government to estimate carbon emissions from land use change and forestry. When I started that job in 1999 the evidence that carbon emissions caused global warming seemed pretty conclusive, but since then new evidence has weakened that case. I am now skeptical." (David Evans, Mises.org)

"Climatologist supports Czech president's view of climate changes" - "Prague, June 1 - Czech-born U.S. climatologist George Kukla, 77, today bore Czech President Vaclav Klaus out in his opinions about climate changes as he said that people are only marginally to blame for global warming, Presidential Office spokesman Petr Hajek has told CTK." (Prague Daily Monitor)

"UK Independent Alarmist Story - Reality Check" - "A story in the UK Independent reported on three papers or stories timed to urge more drastic action by the G-8 in their upcoming Climate Change summit. The story said the changes occuring were far worse than even the most extreme IPCC scenario and thus warranted immediate and strong action. Lets take a look at the claims made." (Joseph D’Aleo, Icecap)

"Global Warming Overheats Australian Politics" - "SYDNEY - Australian Prime Minister John Howard, behind in polls ahead of a 2007 election, was accused on Monday of trying to scare voters by saying opposition plans to cut greenhouse gases would cause an economic recession." (Reuters)

Eye-roller of the moment: "Australia: How climate change hits home" - "ALICE Springs, Cobar and Brisbane are revealed as the population centres that have warmed up the most according to a NEWS.com.au league table charting the effect of climate change on the nation’s towns and cities. The average temperature figures for 22 major towns and cities show all but one – Albany in Western Australia – have warmed up since 1991." (news.com.au)

"When Will Media Report the Kyoto Carbon Con?" - "There’s a huge financial scam being cynically perpetrated on the people of the world that, for the most part, American media are not reporting: the Kyoto Carbon Con.

What makes this silence so astounding is that the press love stories about corporations and governments bilking people out of their life savings.

Take for example the media’s fascination with Enron in the early part of this decade, or more recently all of the focus on oil company profits and supposed price gouging at the pumps.

Yet, despite the predictable media mania for such financial schemes, press outlets have largely ignored the con game involved with anthropogenic global warming irrespective of the billions of dollars at stake." (Noel Sheppard, News Busters)

"Germany's Gabriel Wants Full Auctioning in CO2 Trade" - "ESSEN, Germany - The European Union should charge companies in the future for all of the permits they get to emit carbon dioxide (CO2) as part of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), Germany's environment minister said on Friday." (Reuters)

"Global Carbon Market Gets Mixed Signals" - "LONDON - The chances of carbon markets becoming a global weapon against climate change were no clearer on Friday, as Australia gave a qualified thumbs up, similar to Canada, but the White House remained opposed." (Reuters)

"EU Governments Seek New Design for CO2 Trade Scheme" - "ESSEN, Germany - European Union nations are moving closer to redesigning the bloc's emissions trading scheme to force industry to pay more to emit carbon dioxide and hand Brussels greater authority to set EU-wide emissions caps." (Reuters)

"Whale Forum Passes on Addressing Global Warming" - "ANCHORAGE, Alaska - An international forum this week on the fate of the world's whales barely addressed what scientists consider one of the most serious threats to marine life: global warming." (Reuters)

"Recycling worsens global warming" - "Fancy some contrary thinking? Try this; if you want to save the planet from global warming, don't recycle." (Chris Mellor, Techworld)

"Germany in Climate Change Dilemma Ahead of G8" - "BOXBERG, Germany - As Chancellor Angela Merkel seeks to convince world leaders to cut greenhouse gases at a G8 summit this week, one of the biggest brown coal-fired power plants ever built is taking shape in this depressed town." (Reuters)

"Gasoline refining goes offshore" - "Opposition to new plants within the United States fuels foreign boom" (McClatchy Newspapers)

"Carbon Capture Makes US Coal Growth Uncertain" - "NEW YORK - Growth in US coal use should pivot on the development of a technology utilities may have to adopt to cut greenhouse emissions, the head of the US Energy Information Administration said Monday." (Reuters)

"Airlines Seen Having to Buff Up Green Reputation" - "VANCOUVER, British Columbia - World airlines have a "reputation crisis" on the environment, but governments are not helping them reduce carbon emissions, the head of the International Air Transport Association said on Monday." (Reuters)

"Ethanol Boom Won't Threaten Food Supply - Analysts" - "SAO PAULO - Fears of world food shortages caused by booming use of sugar cane and corn to produce ethanol fuel for motor vehicles are overblown and politically motivated, analysts and politicians said on Monday." (Reuters)

"Biofuel gangs kill for green profits" - "HE survived decades of Colombia’s murderous guerrilla uprisings. He lived through paramilitary purges and steered well clear of the cocaine overlords who swarmed across his rural region. It was something completely different that killed Innocence Dias. He died because the world is turning green.

The global quest for alternative sources of environmentally friendly energy has attracted high-profile support from American politicians, including President George W Bush and Arnold Schwarzenegger, the governor of California. Celebrities such as Daryl Hannah, the actress, and Willie Nelson, the country singer, are leading a campaign to promote green fuels.

Yet the trend has already had disastrous consequences for tens of thousands of peasants in rural Colombia. A surge in demand for biofuels derived from agricultural products has unleashed a chaotic land grab by a new breed of gangster entrepreneurs hoping to cash in on the world’s thirst for palm oil and related bioproducts.

Vast areas of Colombia’s tropical forest are being cleared for palm tree plantations. Charities working with local peasants claim that paramilitary forces in league with biofuel conglomerates – some of them financed by US government subsidies – are forcing families off their land with death threats and bogus purchase offers.

“The paramilitaries are not subtle when it comes to taking land,” said Dominic Nutt, a British specialist with Christian Aid who recently visited Colombia. “They simply visit a community and tell landowners, ‘If you don’t sell to us, we will negotiate with your widow’.” (London Times)

"Indonesia's Forests Threatened by Logging, Palm Oil" - "JAKARTA - It's one of the few countries that still has vast swathes of tropical rainforests left. But conservationists say maybe not for long. Indonesia's rainforests -- especially those on Borneo island -- are being stripped so rapidly because of illegal logging and palm oil plantations for bio-fuels, they could be wiped out altogether within the next 15 years, some environmentalists say." (Reuters)

"China Makes Slim Progress on Energy Savings - Adviser" - "BEIJING - China has made little headway saving energy, reducing pollution and curbing investment as the government strives to create a more sustainable model of economic growth, a prominent expert said in remarks published on Monday." (Reuters)

"Greener by miles" - "Conscientious consumers are being urged to buy locally sourced food in the battle against climate change. But, as Richard Gray discovers, produce from the other side of the world can actually have a smaller carbon footprint." (London Telegraph)

"Cyprus Wants to be Declared GMO Free - Minister" - "NICOSIA - Cyprus wants to declare the island a GMO-free zone because it is not big enough to ensure conventional crops will remain unaffected by biotech ones, its agriculture minister said on Monday." (Reuters)

June 3, 2007

Excellent! "US Senator Blocks Honor for Environmental Pioneer" - "WASHINGTON - A plan to honor environmental pioneer and "Silent Spring" author Rachel Carson on her centennial on Sunday was blocked by a US senator who believes Carson created a climate of "hysteria and misinformation."

Sen. Tom Coburn derailed approval of a Senate resolution honoring the life of Carson, whose 1962 book "Silent Spring" warned of the dangers posed to wildlife and humans by the pesticide DDT and who is credited with inspiring the modern environmental movement." (Reuters)

"Six weeks later, Georgia fires still raging" - "The state's inability to keep the fires from rushing out of the Okefenokee Swamp is kindling a debate over lagging forestry budgets." (The Christian Science Monitor)

Chasing out forestry concerns removes employment, manpower and equipment to contain big fires? Well, who'd a thought...

"Global Warming-Hurricane Link Spurs Controversy" - "WASHINGTON - Climate scientists agree there have been a lot of strong hurricanes lately. They agree that warmer seas have given these storms some extra punch. But they disagree how much global warming is to blame." (Reuters)

A display of honesty? How did that happen? "Hot Enough in Here?" - "Michael Griffin, administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, is renowned for speaking bluntly so it was no surprise when he stuck his foot in his mouth during a recent interview. The disturbing element is that he may have inadvertently revealed one reason the space agency has been cutting back on satellite missions to study global warming.

In an interview with National Public Radio, Mr. Griffin acknowledged that global warming is happening but then, remarkably, suggested that it might not be a problem — or at least one that had to be fixed. “I am not sure that it is fair to say that it is a problem we must wrestle with. To assume that it is a problem is to assume that the state of Earth’s climate today is the optimal climate,” he said, adding that he wasn’t sure there was any “need to take steps to make sure that it doesn’t change.” (New York Times) | NASA Administrator Michael Griffin Not Sure That Global Warming Is A Problem (NPR)

"Scientists Rally Around NASA Chief After Global Warming Comments" - "WASHINGTON, DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, Jun. 1 -- "NASA's top administrator, Michael Griffin, speaking on NPR radio made some refreshingly sensible comments about the present global warming scare," said Robert Ferguson, Director of the Science and Public Policy Institute. "Many rationalist scientists agree with him, clearly demonstrating there is no scientific consensus on man-made, catastrophic global warming," said Ferguson.

Griffin said he doubted global warming is "a problem we must wrestle with," and that it is arrogant to believe that today's climate is the best we could have and that "we need to take steps to make sure that it doesn't change."

While NASA scientist, James Hansen, was sharply critical of his boss, other scientists from around the world came to Griffin's support." (E-Wire)

Global Warming Podcast News 8 - Regular 5-minute podcast briefings on the 'global warming' news they don't want you to hear. Your host: Professor Philip Stott. This time: weather/European isolation.

No? Duh! "Study: Climate change models overstate droughts" - "There will be more flooding and less drought than has been forecast in widely used projections of global warming, according to a new study.

The study using measurements taken by NASA weather satellites compared ocean rainfall from 1987 to 2006 to earlier climate model projections of what that precipitation would be. The models, based on physics equations, were found to be off the mark, according to the study released Thursday by the journal Science." (USA TODAY)

"Verification of Climate Models" - "Everyone is very much in agreement that over the last 100 years of good observational weather data, the Earth has warmed. The exact amount of this warming varies depending upon which data set you use, but warming is evident. The debate has been over the cause of the warming, whether it is mostly natural or anthropogenic (human induced) from an increasing amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere due to human activity. Of course, all of the doomsday scenarios of what will happen in the future come from computer forecasts as a result of a projected doubling of the amount of atmospheric CO2 in the next 100 years. I have written several posts in the past about the problems with the computer models, and there are many." (Craig James, WOODTV)

Less-harsh winters good for diversity and life generally... "Dartford Warbler Numbers Rising Fast" - "LONDON - The Dartford warbler, once one of Britain's rarest birds, has soared in numbers by 70 percent in the past 13 years as it spreads from its traditional base in southern England, the latest UK bird survey showed on Thursday.

The shy bird, which has a distinctive buzzing call, has grown to more than 3,200 pairs since the last survey in 1994, the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) said.

The current figure, the highest tally for more than 40 years, is in stark contrast to the bleak years of the early 1960s when just 11 pairs were left in Britain." (Reuters)

... just don't tell anyone it's the result of dreaded 'global warming'.

Meanwhile: "Arctic, Tropical Islands Team Up for Climate Pact" - "OSLO - Arctic peoples and tropical islanders will try to strengthen an unusual alliance on the front lines of global warming from Sunday by seeking ways to cope with melting ice and rising seas." (Reuters)

"Global warming is shrinking the Great Lakes" - "Lake Superior, the largest body of fresh water in the world by surface area, is experiencing its lowest water levels since the record set in 1926. The lake is down by 34 centimetres from a year ago, and more than half a metre below its long-term mean. At least part of the drop can be attributed to a multi-year drought that has been particularly severe since 2006. More troubling, however, is evidence that global warming is driving a long-term shrinkage of this massive natural reservoir." (NewScientist.com news service)

Why was the record set in 1926? What makes the current level "global warming"?

"Earth nears tipping point on climate change" - "Dangerous climate change has not yet arrived, but the tipping point may not be far off. And it may be reached with a smaller temperature rise than recent studies suggest.

Those are among the conclusions from an international team of climate scientists in a study this month, which they say bolsters the case for an alternative strategy to combat climate change. The main idea: focus intensely on cutting greenhouse-gas emissions other than carbon dioxide in the short term, giving the world a little leeway in dealing with the trickier issue of CO2.

Most climate scientists point to rising carbon-dioxide levels from burning coal, oil, and gas as the main driver behind global warming. But the international team says that fighting ozone, soot, and other pollutants, which also can warm the atmosphere, could allow CO2 levels to rise a little higher without reaching the tipping point." (The Christian Science Monitor)

Backing ever so slightly away from the ridiculous claims about warming and CO2? It's beginning to look like it.

"Global Warming Is Not a Threat But the Environmentalist Response to It Is" - "Early this winter, the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the summary of its latest report on global warming. It's most trumpeted finding was that the existence of global warming is now "unequivocal."

Although such anecdotal evidence as January's snowfall in Tucson, Arizona and freezing weather in Southern California, and February's more than 100-inch snowfall in upstate New York, might suggest otherwise, global warming may indeed be a fact. It may also be a fact that it is a by-product of industrial civilization (despite two ice ages having apparently occurred in the face of carbon levels in the atmosphere 16 times greater than that of today, millions of years before mankind's appearance on earth).

If global warming and mankind's responsibility for it really are facts, does anything automatically follow from them? Does it follow that there is a need to limit and/or reduce carbon emissions and the use of the fossil fuels - oil, coal, and natural gas - that gives rise to the emissions? The need for such limitation and/or rollback is the usual assumption.

Nevertheless, the truth is that nothing whatever follows from these facts. Before any implication for action can be present, additional information is required." (FMNN)

"Too Much Hot Air" - "Global warming is agitating our minds, particularly after the report of the Inter- governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Four issues are under debate. Is the earth warming in an unprecedented manner, hitherto never seen in history? Are industrialisation and higher lifestyles responsible for this warming? Which countries and regions are the highest emitters of global greenhouse gases? And, can massive technological breakthroughs curtail future emissions to acceptable levels?

Instead of having a dispassionate debate, global warming has suddenly taken on an alarmist hue. Dissenting views are looked upon with suspicion or disdain. Doomsday ayatollahs are nothing new to human history." (Times of India)

"Global Warming: Witnesses for the Skeptical Perspective" - "Thomas Huxley stated that skepticism is the highest of duties and blind faith, the one unpardonable sin. Yet over the past decade, those skeptical of global warming have been attacked with increasing frequency, shrillness, and ugliness. The attacks tend to focus on the messengers. This article will review the skeptical perspective on global warming, and three categories of messengers will be cited:

1. Selected authors, primarily non-scientists, but with some unique perspective on this issue;
2. Distinguished veterans, mostly scientists, mostly retired;
3. Others, including active scientists, TV meteorologists, and state climatologists." (Gerald T. Westbrook, Energy Tribune)

More blatant social engineering: "Rich Must Pay Bulk of Climate Change Bill - Oxfam" - "LONDON - Coping with the ravages of global warming will cost US$50 billion a year, and the rich nations who caused most of the pollution must pay most of the bill, aid agency Oxfam said on Tuesday." (Reuters)

That's where America has it right -- make a dollar, create wealth... so-called "wealth redistribution" is a guaranteed loser for everyone while the answer is really development and wealth generation -- what's wrong with these people?

"Explosion of the Fearmongers: The Greenhousers Strike Back and Out" - "I began this series of critiques of the greenhouse fearmongers with an evocation of the papal indulgences of the Middle Ages as precursors of the "carbon credits"-ready relief for carbon sinners, burdened, because all humans exhale carbon, with original sin. In the Middle Ages they burned heretics, and after reading through the hefty pile of abusive comments and supposed refutations of my initial article on global warming I'm fairly sure that the critics would be only to happy to cash in whatever carbon credits they have and torch me without further ado." (Alexander Cockburn, Counter Punch)

"G8 Greenhouse Gas Emissions Rise; US Not Worst" - "OSLO - Greenhouse gas emissions by leading industrialised nations have accelerated since 2000 and several countries are performing worse than the United States which opposes a UN pact for curbing global warming, UN data shows." (Reuters)

"US Tells UN it May Shift Climate Policy" - "LONDON - A speech by President George W. Bush on Thursday could signal a shift in US climate policy, White House officials told the UN climate change chief Yvo de Boer.

The United States has until now rejected greenhouse gas emissions targets and timetables. Earlier this month it rejected starting talks in Indonesia in December on a new global climate deal to extend the Kyoto Protocol after 2012.

On Thursday, Bush said the United States would work with other nations on a post-Kyoto framework." (Reuters)

"Playing to the Crowd: Talk About Warming" - "President Bush has been feeling the heat on global warming. He’s been feeling it from Congress, from state governors, from the business community and, most recently and powerfully, from America’s closest foreign allies, who are fed up with his passivity on the issue and desperate for him to show some real leadership.

So yesterday Mr. Bush stepped before the microphones in Washington to announce that he would help convene a series of meetings beginning this fall of the worlds’ 15 biggest emitters of greenhouse gases (the United States is No. 1) to develop a long-term “global strategy” for dealing with climate change. He offered no details beyond the general hope that the nations involved would voluntarily establish “midterm national targets” and would increase their investments in new and cleaner technologies." (New York Times) | Fact Sheet: A New International Climate Change Framework (The White House)

"Bush climate plan opens way to global deal-UK's Blair" - "LONDON, May 31 - British Prime Minister Tony Blair welcomed President George W. Bush's climate change strategy on Thursday, saying it was important that the United States for the first time had said it wanted to be part of a global deal." (Reuters)

"Bush Proposes Goals on Greenhouse Gas Emissions" - "WASHINGTON, May 31 — President Bush, fending off international accusations that he was ignoring climate change, proposed for the first time on Thursday to set “a long-term global goal” for cutting greenhouse gas emissions, and he called on other high-polluting nations to join the United States in negotiations aimed at reaching an agreement by the end of next year." (New York Times)

This is a change? "Details of President Bush's Climate Proposal" - "Following are details of US President George W. Bush's proposal for addressing greenhouse gas emissions, an issue that will confront the leaders of the Group of Eight nations meeting in Germany next week." (Reuters)

"U.N. welcomes new US climate change move" - "Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Friday welcomed President Bush's call for a summit on climate change, expressing hope that it will reinforce international efforts to tackle global warming." (Associated Press)

"EU split by Bush's 'green conversion'" - "EUROPE was yesterday struggling to decide whether George Bush, the US president, had experienced a road-to-Damascus conversion over the fight against climate change or was still dragging his heels.

For some leaders, the announcement on Thursday that Mr Bush was seeking a meeting of the 15 leading greenhouse gas emitting countries was "groundbreaking", heralding a new approach by the United States to the whole issue.

But others complained it was simply a restatement of the "classic US line" with no firm targets to cut emissions and prevent global warming." (The Scotsman)

"Climate change move leaves world guessing" - "A chorus of European governments, United Nations officials and green activists has for months been calling 2007 a pivotal year for climate change.

The reason is that the main provisions of the Kyoto protocol on emissions cuts expire in 2012 and proponents of the treaty say it is essential that talks on a successor begin at a UN meeting in Bali in December. Otherwise, they fear, it may be too late to agree a new treaty in time." (Financial Times)

"Bush’s Greenhouse Gas Plan Throws Europe Off Guard" - "FRANKFURT, June 1 — For six years, Europeans have pleaded with President Bush to seize the initiative in the campaign against global warming. Now that he has, many here are even more frustrated. Mr. Bush’s unexpected announcement Thursday that the United States would gather the world’s largest emitters of greenhouse gases to seek a long-term global reduction in emissions has thrown Washington’s European allies, particularly Germany, off balance." (New York Times)

"Pacific allies back Bush proposal" - "US President George W Bush won endorsements Friday from two more key allies for his new global warming initiative as both Australia and Japan said they were willing to back his plan for a post-Kyoto Protocol without specific caps on carbon emissions." (Financial Times)

"Bush Speech Shows Climate Can't be Ignored - Merkel" - "BERLIN - US President George W. Bush's long-term strategy on climate change showed the issue of global warming could not be ignored, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Thursday." (Reuters)

"U.S. Rebuffs Germany on Greenhouse Gas Cuts" - "WASHINGTON, May 25 — The United States has rejected Germany’s proposal for deep long-term cuts in greenhouse gas emissions, setting the stage for a battle that will pit President Bush against his European allies at next month’s meeting of the world’s richest countries.

In unusually harsh language, Bush administration negotiators took issue with the German draft of the communiqué for the meeting of the Group of 8 industrialized nations, complaining that the proposal “crosses multiple red lines in terms of what we simply cannot agree to.”

“We have tried to tread lightly, but there is only so far we can go given our fundamental opposition to the German position,” the American response said." (New York Times)

"Canada Declines to Enter G8 Climate Change Fight" - "OTTAWA - Canada declined on Monday to take sides in a dispute among Group of Eight members over climate change, saying merely it wanted to build consensus on the question of how to fight global warming." (Reuters)

"Harper aims to head off critics" - "Climate-change strategy must take into account Canada's 'unique' position in G-8, official says." (Toronto Star)

Dot.bomb redux: "Investment Banks Flock to Booming Carbon Trade" - "LONDON - Banks are jostling for a piece of what may be the world's fastest growing market, trading carbon emissions permits: Citigroup has just waded in, Bank of America is set to and Deutsche has doubled its team." (Reuters)

"White House Says US Rejects Global Cap and Trade" - "WASHINGTON - The United States has rejected a European push for a proposal aimed at addressing global climate change through Kyoto-style caps on carbon emissions, the White House said on Thursday." (Reuters)

"Asia Carbon Market a Matter of Time - ABN" - "BANGKOK - Asia, with its fast-growing economies and major greenhouse gas emitters, could see its own carbon trade exchange open in a few years, a senior official of Dutch bank ABN AMRO said on Friday." (Reuters)

"Asiapac Ministers Talk Down Regional Carbon Trade" - "DARWIN - An Asia-Pacific carbon trading regime is unlikely to emerge in the near future, dimming hopes for a system to regulate emissions from the world's fastest-growing region, energy ministers said on Monday." (Reuters)

"APEC Needs Technology, Not Regional CO2 Trade - US" - "DARWIN - An Asia Pacific-wide carbon trading scheme is not the best solution for reducing emissions and efforts are better aimed at improving environmentally friendly technology, a top US official said on Tuesday." (Reuters)

"Asiapac to Improve Energy Efficiency, Sets No Targets" - "DARWIN - Asia Pacific countries agreed on Tuesday to improve energy markets transparency and develop more efficient technologies to cut greenhouse gas emissions, but stopped short of setting any firm targets." (Reuters)

Gosh Nick, you think it's like, a scam? "Abuse and incompetence in fight against global warming" - "Up to 20% of carbon savings in doubt as monitoring firms criticised by UN body." (Nick Davies, The Guardian)

Yup: "Truth about Kyoto: huge profits, little carbon saved" - "On the eve of a G8 summit focused on climate change, Nick Davies reveals major flaws in the global system designed to reduce emissions" (The Guardian)

"The Bored Whore of Kyoto" - "Nothing drove home Russia's place in the growing pollution-trading business better than what one carbon finance guy told me at a conference last month sponsored by Gazprom and the World Bank. We were on drink number three or four at the reception when he dropped the green pretense and came clean.

"I don't know if climate change is caused by burning coal or sun flares or what," said the Moscow-based carbon cowboy. "And I don't really give a shit. Russia is the most energy inefficient country around, and carbon is the most volatile market ever. There's a lot of opportunity to make money." (Freezer Box)

"Chinese Most Lucrative Carbon Credits Dry Up" - "HONG KONG - China is switching to renewable energy and efficiency projects to sell carbon credits under the Kyoto Protocol as its most lucrative trade in destroying industrial greenhouse gases dries up, an expert said." (Reuters)

"Australian PM Receives Carbon-Trade Report" - "CANBERRA - Australian Prime Minister John Howard took delivery of an official report on carbon trading on Thursday, and media said it called on Canberra to introduce trading by 2011, rather than wait for a global system." (Reuters)

Hot air locking land out of production: "Australia: Farmer makes $1m for doing nothing at all" - "MEET Queensland's first carbon farmer. Peter Allen, pictured, a third-generation farmer from Moura, has signed a $1 million deal for doing nothing at all. In a historic transaction, mining company Rio Tinto bought the rights to carbon dioxide stored in 3500ha of Mr Allen's heavily vegetated property, 575km northwest of Brisbane. Instead of clearing the land to run cattle, Mr Allen will preserve the trees for 120 years to ensure they soak up carbon dioxide. When you hear talk of carbon offsets, this is where the money goes. Many of the state's farmers stand to reap multimillion-dollar incomes from selling carbon rights to large corporations or individuals wishing to become carbon neutral." (Courier-Mail)

"Germany Fails to Convince Japan on Kyoto Pact Pre-G8" - "HAMBURG, Germany - EU efforts to speed action on climate change took a blow on Tuesday when Japan refused to follow the EU line on how to establish a new international regime once the Kyoto Protocol expires in 2012." (Reuters)

"Japan Rejects 2009 Deadline in Post-Kyoto Talks" - "HAMBURG, Germany - Japan blocked European Union efforts on Tuesday to set a 2009 deadline for agreement on an international pact to battle climate change once the Kyoto Protocol on reducing carbon emissions expires in 2012." (Reuters)

"Japan PM's Climate Plan Seen Lacking Teeth" - "TOKYO - Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's proposal to halve global greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 has come under fire from critics who say it is ineffective because it avoids binding targets or concrete steps." (Reuters)

"Czech Govt to Sue EU Commission Over CO2 Limit Cut" - "PRAGUE - The Czech government agreed on Friday to sue the European Union's executive body over its demand that the country cut its proposed annual carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in 2008-2012, the industry ministry said." (Reuters)

"Russia Approves Kyoto Investment Rules - Interfax" - "MOSCOW - Russia has approved rules that will allow firms to invest under the terms of the Kyoto Protocol, Interfax news agency reported on Tuesday, citing an unidentified government source." (Reuters)

"ANALYSIS-Russia takes first step into global carbon market" - "LONDON, May 30 - Russia this week gave a surprise green light to carbon trading under the Kyoto Protocol to cut greenhouse gas emissions, but needs to start approving actual projects to unlock a multi-billion dollar market.

Russia is the single largest supplier of oil and gas to the European Union and also the world's third biggest emitter of greenhouse gases behind the United States and China.

As a big player in both energy and climate change, it is well-placed to cash in on the sale of emissions cuts, or carbon credits, to other industrialised countries, but has long delayed implementing the necessary rules." (Reuters)

"Sweden Aims to Cut Greenhouse Gases 30 Pct by 2020" - "STOCKHOLM - Sweden aims to cut emissions of greenhouse gases by at least 30 percent by 2020, more than the European Union goal of 20 percent, Environment Minister Andreas Carlgren was quoted on Tuesday as saying." (Reuters)

"EU Presses Climate Case With Asians Ahead of G8" - "HAMBURG, Germany - EU foreign ministers urged Asian countries on Tuesday to join the fight against climate change after hearing China argue that protecting the environment had to be balanced by the right to develop." (Reuters)

"China Shrugs Off EU Calls for Climate Change Action" - "BEIJING - China shrugged off on Tuesday calls from the European Union to take more action on climate change, saying it was still a developing country and it was up to industrialised nations to shoulder more responsibility." (Reuters)

"China to announce strategy for combating climate change" - "BEIJING - China will next week release its national strategy for fighting climate change, but there is no plans for a cap on greenhouse gas emissions, officials said on Thursday." (China Daily)

"India Says Emissions Will Fall by 25 Pct by 2020" - "NEW DELHI - India said on Monday its existing energy policy would cut its greenhouse gas emissions by over 25 percent by 2020, but warned pressure to set mandatory targets to curb global warming would hurt economic growth. Currently contributing around three percent of global carbon emissions, India is already among the world's top polluters, along with the United States, China, Russia and Japan." (Reuters)

"Differences remain between India and EU on climate change, energy" - "Berlin - German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier and his Indian counterpart Pranab Mukherjee acknowledged after a Berlin meeting Thursday that achieving agreement between the European Union and India on climate protection and energy policy was "difficult." Steinmeier, representing the EU during Germany's presidency, said however that India was emphasizing its "high interest" in cooperation with Europe in the technological sphere. "But getting agreement is a bit difficult in climate protection and energy policy," he said." (DPA)

"Mexico Launches Plan to Combat Global Warming" - "MEXICO CITY - Mexico promised to plant 250 million trees this year and ban old trucks and buses from the roads as part of a plan launched on Friday to fight global warming." (Reuters)

"Mexico Avoids Gas Emission Targets in Climate Plan" - "MEXICO CITY - Mexico promised to plant 250 million trees this year and get aging trucks and buses off the roads in a plan to fight global warming launched on Friday, but did not set clear greenhouse gas emissions targets." (Reuters)

"Global Insanity Over Global Warming: Climate Change - The Latest Governmental Folly" - "Contrary to the propaganda you've been fed by the IPCC, Al Gore, and the dominant media, greenhouse gases in general and carbon dioxide from fossil fuels in particular are not significant contributors to climate change." ()

"And Gas Saver Makes Three Cars in the Driveway" - "DETROIT, May 25 — With gas prices well over $3 a gallon nationwide, many drivers are lining up to buy small cars. But hundreds of thousands of consumers aren’t giving up anything to downsize. Instead, they are simply adding pint-size transportation to their driveways, parked alongside their S.U.V. or pickup." (New York Times)

"New German Cars May Need Emissions Certificates" - "BERLIN - Germany's environment ministry is proposing an emissions certificate be displayed on new cars that would alert potential buyers to heavily polluting vehicles, a ministry spokesman said on Saturday." (Reuters)

"Britain on Brink of Big Mistake, Greenpeace Says" - "LONDON - Britain could slash its carbon emissions and secure its future energy supplies quickly and cheaply by abandoning plans to build more nuclear power plants, according to Greenpeace." (Reuters)

Strong indication it's a good move, then.

"Climate to Push Up Australian Power Costs - Study" - "CANBERRA - Electricity prices could rise by up to 75 percent from 2020 if Australia's government refuses to take strong climate change action and set up a carbon trading system, Australia's Climate Institute said on Monday." (Reuters)

But no one with any sense pays any attention to the green fruit-loops calling themselves the Climate Institute anyway.

"Westminster blows £29m to save £20k: The suspect maths of energy-saving street lighting" - "Westminster City Council is doing its bit to save the planet by installing energy-saving street lamps in every thoroughfare in the borough, the BBC reports.

The bold initiative follows a "successful trial" of the £1,000-a-pop Furyo Lanterns on Harrow Road which saved "on an average day", enough juice to light a house for two days and cut carbon emissions on the test highway by 0.28 tonnes over three weeks.

So far so good. However, the Beeb says that if Westminster replaces all of its 29,000 street lights, it will save "up to £20,000 every year". Since the cost of the new, whale-hugging illumination is £29m, it will therefore recoup its outlay in a mere 1,450 years." (The Register)

"Lawmakers Push for Big Subsidies for Coal Process" - "WASHINGTON, May 28 — Even as Congressional leaders draft legislation to reduce greenhouse gases linked to global warming, a powerful roster of Democrats and Republicans is pushing to subsidize coal as the king of alternative fuels." (New York Times)

The Crone's still worried about the phantom menace: "The Coal Trap" - "There is a rule for judging solutions to the twin problems of energy dependence and global warming: A policy designed to solve one problem should not make the other worse. But that is a likely outcome of the many “energy independence” bills circulating in Congress that aim to build a whole new generation of coal-to-liquid plants to convert coal into automotive fuel." (New York Times)

"Cheaper Ethanol to Boost Brazil Demand, Aid Sugar" - "SAO PAULO - World sugar prices are expected to firm after Brazilian ethanol prices fell close to production costs and boosted domestic demand for the cane-based fuel, a leading Brazilian analyst said on Friday.

Ethanol prices may have bottomed after falling sharply since Brazil's main cane growing center-south region started harvesting an expected record sugar cane crop in April.

"I don't think ethanol prices will fall below production costs because the flex-fuel vehicle market could absorb the extra supply," Plinio Nastari, president of the Sao Paulo-based Datagro consultancy, told Reuters." (Reuters)

"Edwards Launches Plan to Boost US Ethanol Use" - "WASHINGTON - Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards Thursday unveiled an energy proposal that rivals plans by fellow candidates in the race toward boosting the use of ethanol in the United States." (Reuters)

"Ethanol Plants Spark 'Green' Concerns in US Cities" - "ROCKFORD, Ill. - The Believers Bible Chapel outside this rusting northern Illinois industrial town may soon have a new neighbor -- a 118 million-gallon-per-year ethanol distillery. And like so many small communities around the United States, Rockford is feeling the tension between business interests rushing to cash in on biofuels and residents worried about the environmental consequences." (Reuters)

"As pork prices soar, Chinese put brakes on corn for ethanol" - "With a famine less than 50 years in its past, China remains sensitive about using food for fuel." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"Malaysia, Indonesia Counter Green Concerns Over Palm" - "KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia and Indonesia, the world's largest palm-oil producers, agreed on Friday to take measures to counter environmental concerns they said were undermining palm oil's claim to be a green fuel." (Reuters)

"Palm Oil Puts Squeeze on Asia's Endangered Orangutan" - "PALANGKARAYA, Central Kalimantan - Bound hand and foot, dishevelled orangutans caught raiding Borneo's oil palm crops silently await their fate as a small crowd of plantation workers gather to watch.

Lacking only hand-cuffs and finger-printing to complete the atmosphere of a criminal bust, such "ape evictions" have become part of life for Asia's endangered red apes.

Thousands have strayed into the path of international commerce as Indonesia and Malaysia, their last remaining habitats, race to convert their forests to profitable palm crops." (Reuters)

"Uganda Scraps Plan to Cut Rainforest for Palm Oil" - "KAMPALA - Uganda's government has scrapped plans to convert thousands of hectares of rainforest on an island in Lake Victoria into a palm oil plantation, the environment minister said on Saturday." (Reuters)

"Museum creates furore out of dinosaurs" - "KEN Ham has gone from teaching science in Queensland to becoming a modern-day religious missionary determined to build a rallying point for the world's Christians. Mr Ham is the founder of the world's first Creation Museum. It challenges evolutionary theory by arguing the world is only 6000 years old, created in six days by God, and dinosaurs walked the planet alongside humans." (Courier-Mail)

Well, at least he's no longer an alleged science teacher...

"Air-Freighted Produce May Lose UK Organic Status" - "LONDON - Britain's largest organic group may refuse to certify produce which has been imported by air amid concern about environmental impact, despite concern that such a move could hit farmers in developing countries." (Reuters)

"CSIRO races to breed chook immune to bird flu" - "CSIRO scientists in Victoria are in an international race to develop a genetically modified chicken immune to the killer bird flu." (The Australian)