The Week That Was: 2020-01-11 (January 11, 2020)
Brought to You by SEPP (www.SEPP.org)
The Science and Environmental Policy Project
By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project (SEPP)
Green Arrogance: Regardless of the political system, or ideology, arrogance can lead to destructive actions contrary to the interests of the public. History produces many examples, including major wars. We are seeing examples of arrogance in so called “green” laws and regulations which are actually contrary to nature. Humans can modify and use nature for their benefit but cannot regulate it. Unfortunately, politicians frequently ignore limits of power when passing sweeping laws and regulations. This week, three examples of arrogance, or hubris, are evident: 1) bushfires in Australia; 2) closing the Crescent Dunes power plant in Nevada; and 3) the continuation of a 2.5 gigawatt (GW) off-shore wind project off the coast of Virginia Beach ordered by the governor of Virginia.
Green Arrogance – Australia: Much is being written about the fires in Australia. Many news organizations are blaming climate change. However, these entities fail to report that bushfires in eastern Australia are part of natural events. Jo Nova and Tony Heller document past examples such as Black Friday, around January 13, 1939 in Victoria, Australia, in which almost 20,000 square kilometers (5,000,000 acres, 2,000,000 ha) of land were burned, 71 people died, 3,700 buildings were destroyed, and several towns were entirely obliterated.
The fire resulted in a battle of government bureaucrats, pitting the Forests Commission, which wanted controlled burns, against Board of Works, which wanted to protect water supplies from burns. The issue was settled latter in 1939 by the Stretton Royal Commission which recommended the Forests Commission receive additional funding and have responsibility for fire protection on all public land, including State forests, unoccupied Crown Lands and National Parks, plus a buffer extending one mile beyond their boundaries onto private land. The commission also encouraged the common practice on private lands of controlled burning of bush to minimize future risks.
Unfortunately, the greens have successfully fought controlled burns in recent years. Under the title “Environmental Crime in Australia,” the Australian Institute of Criminology lists numerous statutes titled “Illegal native vegetation clearing” and associated penalties. The Scope and Definition section states:
“Up until the last couple of decades, land and hence native vegetation clearance was a conventional and legally-condoned practice, largely committed to open up land for agriculture but standard for any private landowner wishing to modify the environment. In Australia, with an historically-sanctioned economic dependence on agriculture, there has been a valuation of the land mostly founded on the profit it can turn and often at the expense of its ecological worth. Agriculture and grazing still account for a great deal of native vegetation clearance occurring today but development of land for other purposes is a significant culprit.
“Definitions of clearing and native vegetation differ between the Australian states and territories (some of these are listed in Table 25). Native vegetation clearing, however, generally refers to any act that removes, disfigures or kills vegetation deemed indigenous to the region. Illegal clearance, then, is any such vegetative removal or destruction, or clearance that takes place without due authorisation.” [Boldface added]
It is amazing that governments outlaw actions by property owners who clear bush to protect their property from bushfires! Until the laws are changed, it appears that bushfires in Australia will become common once again. Even the aboriginal bushmen of Australia, before westerners came, understood the importance of controlled burns to stop bushfires.
As a side note, perhaps the worst bushfire in the US in recorded history was around Peshtigo, Wisconsin, on a cold, windy October 8, 1871, which burnt nearly 1.2 million acres, (4,860 square km), 50% larger than Rhode Island, destroyed twelve communities and killed between 1500-2500 people. This occurred the same day as the Great Chicago Fire.
Be they the burning of the Everglades, prairie fires, bushfires, forest fires, etc., destructive fires are common to nature. The issue is the best way to minimize the damage. Passing the blame to climate change is avoiding the issue. See links under Challenging the Orthodoxy, Changing Weather – Australia, Expanding the Orthodoxy
Green Arrogance – Nevada: Even in sunny Nevada, the major issue with solar power is generating electricity when the sun is low or at night. The hottest time of the day in Las Vegas is around 3 pm. As electricity for air conditioning is needed the most, solar power is fading. This creates a time-of-day problem for solar energy. It does not work well when needed the most and does not work at night. Ignoring physical reality, the Nevada legislature passed laws requiring 50% of electricity used to come from renewable power by 2030.
The industrial solar plant, Crescent Dunes, was designed to address the time-of-day problem. The $1 Billion project used around 10,000 mirrors to reflect the sun’s rays to a tower — to drive steam turbines and to store energy in molten salt, well above 1000 K (725 C, 1350 F). The materials’ problems in such a configuration are tremendous. Molten salt is extremely corrosive.
Late last year, Crescent Dunes lost its only customer, NV Energy Inc., which cited the plant’s lack of reliability. An article in Bloomberg pointed out that the US government provided $737 million in loan guarantees for this failed project and said NV was paying about $135 per megawatt-hour, “compared with less than $30 per MWh today at a new Nevada photovoltaic solar farm, according to BloombergNEF, which researches fossil fuel alternatives.”
But, as energy expert Norman Rogers who has followed Crescent Dunes points out, the Bloomberg article avoids the central issue: what happens when the sun goes down? Photovoltaic does not work! The electrical generation must come from somewhere and Nevada is poor for wind. Perhaps the next step for Nevada’s government is to legislate that the sun stays at high noon well past midnight. One is reminded of the closing lines of “Ozymandias” by Percy Shelley:
“My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings;
Look on my Works, ye Mighty, and despair!
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal Wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.”
See links under Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Solar and Wind.
Green Arrogance – Virginia: Not to be outdone in arrogance, in September Virginia Governor Ralph Northam issued an executive order calling for 2.5 GW of offshore wind by 2026. Of course, this set the wind world fluttering. It is part of a plan to have 30% of electricity carbon-free by 2030 and 100% carbon-free by 2050. According to reports, Virginia’s agencies and executive branch institutions will lead by example, aiming to procure at least 30% of their electricity from renewable resources by 2022. Who knows from where?
The planned facility will be about 26 miles off the coast of Virginia Beach. TWTW was unable to find any realistic estimates of the costs involved. Reports on wind power from the North Sea are not encouraging to those who are concerned about costs. The corrosive effects of saltwater are a big problem, adding to the costs of maintenance at sea. The major Virginia electrical utility, Dominion Energy, does not care about costs because it is regulated, so it receives a profit on all authorized expenditures, no matter how ridiculous they may be.
The Governor’s plans may be complicated by a weather condition known as the Bermuda High. These extensive high-pressure systems occur offshore of the western Atlantic, and in the summer create hot, humid days and nights, with little wind in the Eastern US. They create prolonged heat waves, interspaced by thunderstorms. In Virginia, they often occur during peak electricity demand for air conditioning. Since the state government is planning a very expensive offshore project which will not generate electricity when it is needed the most, perhaps the next step in green arrogance is to order the winds to blow!
Greenhouse Effect – CO2 and Methane: Donn Dears has two posts showing graphs illustrating the results of physicist William Happer’s calculations of the greenhouse effect, which Happer presented at an independent press briefing held in Madrid during the 25th Conference of Parties of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in December, which concluded without achieving its objectives.
The graphs illustrate Happer’s calculations on the effects of increasing carbon dioxide (CO2) on earth’s temperatures and the effects of increasing methane on temperatures. Unfortunately, the graphs can be somewhat tricky to read and TWTW will try to explain them somewhat differently than Dears did. [Suggest one looks at the graph as they read the comments below.]
In the first graph, Happer shows 1) the would-be infrared (IR) emissions to space from a hypothetical earth with one uniform temperature (60ºF, 16ºC) with no atmosphere, and 2) the actual IR as measured at the top of the atmosphere from space. The top smooth curve on the graph is the theoretical (Planck) curve with no greenhouse gases. The lower jagged line approximates the actual IR emissions as modified by greenhouse gases. In the region where greenhouse gases blocks IR, there is a wide range of frequencies blocked by atmospheric water vapor and narrower ranges of frequencies of IR blocked by other gases. Each greenhouse gas is identified. From that data, Happer infers how much IR each gas (CO2, H2O and other greenhouse gases) individually absorbs and re-emits, slowing the cooling of the earth. (Without greenhouse gases, Happer estimates the earth’s average surface temperature would be about 16ºF (minus 9 ºC).
Also, Happer illustrates (in green) the additional amount of heat energy that would be lost to space without any CO2. He then calculates the additional warming that would occur if the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere doubled from today’s 400 parts per million volume (ppmv) to 800 ppmv. The increased warming is slight. What economists call diminishing returns has already strongly set in.
In his second post, Dears gives Happer’s calculations for Methane (CH4). The effect of a doubling of methane is trivial. See links under Challenging the Orthodoxy.
Hurricanes and Other Tropical Cyclones: Roger Pielke Jr. and Ryan Maue have an article on 50 years of global hurricane landfall data. The article followed the annual report by the reinsurance company, Munich Re, which stated three tropical cyclones caused billions in losses which dominated the natural catastrophes in 2019. In their 50-year analysis Pielke and Maue conclude that there have been lots of up and downs but no trends. Regarding claims that storms are becoming worse, Pielke and Maui state:
“We have no doubt that battles over the science of tropical cyclones will continue to feature in the climate debate. We also have no expectation that these battles will be resolved soon. Fortunately, we have good data and good science to help inform decisions to help prepare for and respond to these monster storms, no matter how the future plays out. Consequently, we have every expectation that using this knowledge, the world is well poised to continue its notable progress of improving responses to tropical cyclones that has been seen in recent decades.”
See links under Science, Policy, and Evidence
The Worst of Times or The Best of Times: Contrary to what the UN and its followers claim, TWTW finds little evidence of a climate crisis or a similar global threat. Using data compiled by “Our World in Data” across 12 categories: extreme poverty (40 years), GDP per capita (multiple centuries), population (200 years), child mortality (200 years), fertility rate (65 years), life expectancy (centuries), hunger and undernourishment (16 years), education (145 years), access to improve water sources and sanitation (25 years), energy access (25 years), energy use (55 years), and CO2 emissions (215 years); there is no category where the data indicates a clear and present danger.
Note that TWTW considers increasing CO2 to be a benefit to the environment and humanity, not a danger and will do so until clear physical evidence is presented showing it is a danger. In short, the claims of a climate crisis are imaginary. Improvements are needed, such as access to reliable, clean energy. (Coal is not dirty with proper combustion and treatment of emissions (not CO2).) Yet, many of those who claim a climate crisis are denying access to electricity needed by those who do not have it. No wonder China, India, and other countries pay lip service to the UN and alarmist organizations but ignore their wishes. See links under Seeking a Common Ground.
Additions and Corrections: Richard Lindzen questioned the use of the term reanalysis data in the last TWTW. He wrote:
“Do you know what reanalysis data is? By definition, it is global, but it is not ‘data’. It is data that is interpolated so as to be consistent with models.”
As used in TWTW, the terminology was poor. In this instance, TWTW was referring to a graph by John Christy in the November 9 TWTW. For the period 1979 to 2025, it compared the mid-tropospheric temperature change (as calculate by three US models) with satellite and balloon observations. One of the observation lines was derived from reanalyzes.
Number of the Week: 79% up 16% in two years: A great deal has been written about the rapid growth of solar and wind energy, much of it vague. For 2018, the last year for which the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) has full year statistics, in the Table 1.2, Primary Energy Production by Source, EIA numbers show that fossil fuels accounted for 79% of energy production. (Coal 16%, natural gas (dry) 33%, oil 24%, and natural gas plant liquids 6%) nuclear produced 9%, hydro 3%, solar 1%, and wind 3%. Biomass burning, largely from biofuels, waste, and waste wood accounted for almost 6%, more than solar and wind combined (geothermal is insignificant). Note, the table is total primary energy production not just electricity production.
Also, total production from fossil fuels went up 16% from 2016 to 2018 and even coal went up by 5%. It appears that the claim that wind and solar are driving out coal is more wishful thinking than fact. See links under Energy Issues – US.
NEWS YOU CAN USE:
Anti-Energy Naomi Oreskes Calls for Regulations on Free Speech
By Spencer Walrath, Energy in Depth, Jan 2, 2020
[SEPP Comment: Free speech such as demanding that Oreskes produce evidence supporting her personal attacks against respected scientists?]
German Solar Industry, Politicians, Call For Punishment Of Dissenters: “Sabotaging Climate Emergency Measures”
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Jan 5, 2020
Journalists: We Want Censorship
By Donna Laframboise, Big Picture News, Jan 8, 2020
Suppressing Scientific Inquiry
Peter Ridd: Scientific Misconduct At James Cook University Confirms My Worst Fears
By Peter Ridd, GWPF, Jan 10, 2020
“Science funding bodies, such as the Australian Research Council, should insist that a high penalty be paid by the highest officers of the University who were ultimately responsible for the failure to investigate possible fraud.
“If this does not occur, funding bodies should withdraw all support for JCU.”
“The results of Clark et al. (2020), as the authors mention, do not mean that ocean acidification is not a serious environmental threat. They reveal that the effect of high CO2 levels on reef fish behaviour is not a concern. As an aside, in my opinion ocean pH changes are a credible, though not proven, threat to the GBR. This is in contrast to other well publicised threats, such as from agriculture or modest temperature increases, which I do not believe are a significant threat.”
Challenging the Orthodoxy — NIPCC
Climate Change Reconsidered II: Physical Science
Idso, Carter, and Singer, Lead Authors/Editors, Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC), 2013
Climate Change Reconsidered II: Biological Impacts
Idso, Idso, Carter, and Singer, Lead Authors/Editors, Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC), 2014
Climate Change Reconsidered II: Fossil Fuels
By Multiple Authors, Bezdek, Idso, Legates, and Singer eds., Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change, April 2019
Download with no charge:
Why Scientists Disagree About Global Warming
The NIPCC Report on the Scientific Consensus
By Craig D. Idso, Robert M. Carter, and S. Fred Singer, Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC), Nov 23, 2015
Download with no charge:
Nature, Not Human Activity, Rules the Climate
S. Fred Singer, Editor, NIPCC, 2008
Global Sea-Level Rise: An Evaluation of the Data
By Craig D. Idso, David Legates, and S. Fred Singer, Heartland Policy Brief, May 20, 2019
Challenging the Orthodoxy
Good News for Humanity, Part 1
By Donn Dears, Power For USA, Jan 7, 2020
Good News for Humanity, Part 2
By Donn Dears, Power For USA, Jan 10, 2020
Climate alarmists have abandoned scientific method
Letter By Ed Berry, Daily Inter Lake, Montana, Jan 6, 2020
“The cause of climate change is a subject of theoretical physics, not of ecology. Ecology makes three invalid assumptions: ‘natural’ is good, the climate is fragile, and human influences are bad. Physics makes no such assumptions.”
Climate sensitivity in light of the latest energy imbalance evidence
By Frank Bosse, Climate Etc. Jan 10, 2020
Link to paper on what may be used in the next generation models: An emergent constraint on Transient Climate Response from simulated historical warming in CMIP6 models
By Femke J.M.M. Nijsse, et al., Earth System Dynamics
Scientists: The CO2 Greenhouse Warming Effect Rides On Mere Assumption And Lacks Empirical Verification
By Kenneth Richard, No Tricks Zone, Jan 6, 2020
30 years of IPCC assessment reports – How well have they done?
By Clive Best, His Blog, Jan 2, 2020 [H/t GWPF]
“It is normal practice in science that theoretical predictions which fail experimental tests are rejected or at the very least modified. Climate science is different. The news from the latest modelling ensemble CMIP6 is that the new generation of ESMs are even more sensitive to CO2 than the 7-year-old CMIP5 models. CMIP6 produces even stronger warming trends in stark contrast to the actual observations! Where is the scientific accountability? Has not climate science perhaps simply merged with climate activism?”
Are Australia Bushfires Worsening from Human-Caused Climate Change?
By Roy Spencer, His Blog, Jan 8, 2020
Eye-popping video exposes brazen junk science by federal climate assessment program
By John Eidson, American Thinker, Jan 10, 2020
Link to video: My Gift to Climate Alarmists
By Tony Heller, Real Climate Science, Sep 20, 2019
James D. Goodridge – climate skeptic pioneer and mentor, 1928-2020
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Jan 9, 2020
Defending the Orthodoxy
Global climate may improve, but academic gloom seems here to stay
College campus climate change crusade
By Anthony Sadar, Washington Times, Jan 9, 2019
[SEPP Comment: Sadar is not defending the orthodoxy, but demonstrating what they claim.]
We broke down the last decade of climate change in 7 charts
By Clayton Aldern and Emily Pontecorvo, Grist, Dec 31, 2019
Questioning the Orthodoxy
The Climate Decade that Was: Failed Predictions, Tour De Paris, and the Gretas
By Vijay Jayaraj, WUWT, Jan 8, 2020
Allan MacRae’s Summary of Recent Posts
By Staff, ICECAP, Jan 9, 2020
Climate Change Advocacy: Application Of Science, Or Religious Cult?
By Francis Menton, Manhattan Contrarian, Jan 8, 2020
Climate Hysteria Is A Backdoor For Imposing Personal Interests On The Public
I & I Editorial Board, Jan 7, 2020
Change in US Administrations
Democrats, greens blast Trump rollback of major environmental law
By Rebecca Beitsch, The Hill, Dec 9, 2020
Social Benefits of Carbon Dioxide
Benefits of CO2 Emissions and Fossil Energy Use for Humanity
By Craig Idso, Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change, Jan 9, 2020
Link to video: http://www.co2science.org/video/confirmed/humanlongevity.php
Link to transcript: http://www.co2science.org/video/confirmed/humanlongevity.pdf
“This video segment discusses the fundamental link between CO2 emissions and global life expectancy.”
Seeking a Common Ground
Our World in Data
12 key metrics to understand the state of the world
By Max Roser, Hannah Ritchie and Esteban Ortiz-Ospina, Our World in Data (2013 revised 2019)
Tragic, but unprecedented? Not yet
By Jennifer Marohasy, Spectator, Australia, Jan 6, 2020
Editorial: It’s No Conspiracy Against Climate Science To Say We Must Adapt To Changing Weather
Editorial, Daily Telegraph, Via GWPF, Jan 7, 2020
Human Ingenuity: The Ultimate Resource (for minerals, adaptation)
By Robert Bradley Jr. Master Resource, Jan 7, 2020
Science, Policy, and Evidence
What 50 Years Of Global Hurricane Landfall Data Can Teach Us About Climate Change
By Roger Pielke and Ryan Maue, Forbes, Jan 9, 2020 [H/t Paul Homewood]
Tropical cyclones causing billions in losses dominate nat cat picture of 2019
By Staff, Munich RE, Jan 8, 2020
Review of Recent Scientific Articles by CO2 Science
The Combined Effects of CO2 and Temperature on Soybean Grain Biomass
Palacios, C.J., Grandis, A., Carvalho, V.J., Salatino, A. and Buckeridge, M.S. 2019. Isolated and combined effects of elevated CO2 and high temperature on the whole-plant biomass and the chemical composition of soybean seeds. Food Chemistry 275: 610-617. Jan 8, 2020
“So what will the future bring for the grain biomass of this key Brazilian cultivar? Given that the climate models are presently overestimating the warming power of CO2 by a factor of three, it is expected that positive effects of rising atmospheric CO2 will more than compensate for any potential negative growth effects from a modest temperature rise. And thus we expect soybean grain biomass to increase. And that is a future we should all look forward to!”
The Combined Effects of CO2, Nitrogen Supply and Heat Stress on Sweet Pepper
Pérez-Jiménez, M., Piñero, M.C. and del Amor, F.M. 2019. Heat shock, high CO2 and nitrogen fertilization effects in pepper plants submitted to elevated temperatures. Scientia Horticulturae 244: 322-329. Jan 6, 2020
“In commenting on their several findings, the authors conclude that ‘elevated CO2 and heat action are two promoters of plant growth and development which, under climate change, might suppose also the avoidance of increasing drought and salinity stress and contamination of water reserved by N.’ And that would suggest a win-win scenario for sweet pepper plants if both temperature and CO2 levels rise in the future.”
Models v. Observations
New Study Finds Global Warming Did Not Make Hurricane Florence Worse
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Jan 9, 2020
“In short, if the model does not fit with the facts, then the model is wrong!”
Measurement Issues — Surface
2019 second hottest year on record
By Patrick Galey, Phys.org, Jan 8, 2020
“The five warmest years on record have all occurred in the last five years.”
[SEPP Comment: Has 1998 disappeared? This was found to be the second warmest year in the entire satellite record. TWTW was unable to find the newspaper statement in Climate bulletins of Copernicus Climate Change Service, the latest being Jan 8, 2020. https://climate.copernicus.eu/climate-bulletins. Making a foolish conversion error, the newspaper, The Hill, stated: “The average temperature last year was almost 33.08 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than the 1981–2010 average, C3S found.”Boldface added.]
What the BOM don’t say: it’s not the hottest year in Australia according to satellites
By Jo Nova, Her Blog, Jan 9, 2020
Measurement Issues — Atmosphere
December 2019: Maps and Graphs [Atmospheric temperature trends]
By Staff, Global Temperature Report, Earth System Science Center, UAH, Jan 2020
Monthly Anomaly Lower Troposphere, December 2019: https://www.nsstc.uah.edu/climate/2019/December2019/201912_map.png
Yearly Anomaly Lower Troposphere, 2019
Monthly Global Lower Troposphere, December 1978 to December 2019
New Hurricane Study Finds “No Obvious Trends”
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Jan 10, 2020
Safer from climate disaster than ever
By John Robson, Climate Discussion Nexus, Jan 8, 2020
Link to paper: Empirical evidence of declining global vulnerability to climate-related hazards
By Formetta and Feyen, Global Environmental Change, July 2019
Despite 1990s Warming, Japan Climate Has Become More Agreeable, Less Extreme Over Past 100 Years!
No trend in long-term annual precipitation
By Kirye in Tokyo and Pierre Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Jan 9, 2020
German 2019 Weather-Related Insured Damage BELOW AVERAGE For 6th Consecutive Year!
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Jan 8, 2020
Climate Emergency Tour: Ski Resorts Edition
By John Robson, Climate Discussion Nexus, Jan 8, 2020
The Coldest Air in Years Will Hit Western Washington
By Cliff Mass, Weather Blog, Jan 10, 2020
Changing Weather — Australia
Inferno on Black Friday 1939: 71 deaths, 3,700 buildings, too much fuel and “lit by the hand of man”
By Jo Nova, Her Blog, Jan 10, 2020
The cloudless NW Indian ocean may drive Australian storms and US cold weather in the next month
By Jo Nova, Her Blog, Jan 11, 2020
Australia Drought, The Indian Ocean Dipole & Sudden Stratospheric Warming
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Jan 5, 2020
Hijacking Australian 2019 Bushfire Tragedies to Fearmonger Climate Change
By Jim Steele, Landscapes and Cycles, Jan 4, 2020
Scientist estimates that more than a billion animals killed by Australian wildfires
The new estimate is more than double what one prominent ecologist predicted mere weeks ago.
By Denise Chow, NBC News, Jan 8, 2020
“Approximately 34 species and subspecies of native Australian mammals have become extinct within the last 200 years — the highest extinction rate of any region in the world, according to the University of Sydney.”
By Christopher Monckton of Brenchley, WUWT, Jan 5, 2020
‘Climate change doesn’t cause fires’
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Jan 10, 2020
2019 Fires Much Less Extensive Than 1939
By Tony Heller, Real Climate Science, Jan 10, 2020
Arsonists Fuelling Australia’s Bushfire Crisis As Arrest Toll Hits 183
By Staff, The Australian, Via GWPF, Jan 7, 2020
Koalas Face Extinction After Bushfires 
By Tony Heller, Real Climate Science, Jan 9, 2020
Australian wildfires were caused by humans, not climate change
By Patrick Michaels & Myron Ebell, Washington Examiner, Jan 8, 2020
Australian bushfires: If only they’d reduced CO2
By John Robson, Climate Discussion Nexus, Jan 8, 2020
Earth’s Ice Ages
By Andy May, WUWT, Jan 3, 2020
Changing Climate – Cultures & Civilizations
Viking runestone linked to fears of climate change: study
By Staff Writers, Stockholm (AFP), Jan 8, 2020
“But the researchers suggest it could be speaking of a different kind of battle: ‘The conflict between light and darkness, warmth and cold, life and death.’”
North Atlantic Current may cease temporarily in the next century
By Staff Writers, Groningen, The Netherlands (SPX), Jan 07, 2020
Link to paper: Transition Probabilities of Noise-induced Transitions of the Atlantic Ocean Circulation
By Daniele Castellana, et al. Nature, Scientific Reports, Dec 30 2019
From the abstract: “For the present-day state, we estimate the transition probability of the partial collapse over the next 100 years to be about 15%, with a high sensitivity of this probability to the surface freshwater noise amplitude.”
[SEPP Comment: What is the basis for the probability estimate – guesses?]
Changing Cryosphere – Land / Sea Ice
1903: Dauphine Alps Glaciers Shrinking 50 Feet Per Day
By Tony Heller, Real Climate Science, Jan 10, 2020
Greenland Ice Core CO2 Concentrations Deserve Reconsideration
By Renee Hannon, WUWT, Jan 7, 2020
Polar bear sea ice habitat at the start of the Arctic winter is abundant except off Labrador
By Susan Crockford, Polar Bear Science, Jan 4, 2020
“Now completely ice covered, there is considerable thick, multi-year ice in the eastern Beaufort as usual (weekly stage of development chart below from the Canadian Ice Service). When cold conditions in Alaska combine with this multi-year ice pushing against the shoreline, the resulting thick and consolidated shorefast ice in spring forces pregnant ringed and bearded seals to move elsewhere, causing widespread starvation of polar bears – as it did in 1974-76 and 2004-2006 – that these days gets blamed on climate change:”
[SEPP Comment: Cold can be tough on polar bears.]
Say goodbye to your toboggan… again
By John Robson, Climate Discussion Nexus, Jan 8, 2020
Ex-Judge To Investigate Ocean Acidification Research Controversy [Australia]
By Staff, Time Higher Education, Via GWPF, Jan 10, 2020
Ocean acidification a big problem — but not for coral reef fish behavior
A comprehensive multi-year project challenges previous findings
Press Release, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Jan 8, 2020 [H/t WUWT]
“‘While our new work suggests ocean acidification may not cause population declines because of behavioural disturbances in coral reef fishes, climate change is currently destroying the reef habitat through coral bleaching during heat waves,’ Clark said. ‘So, despite our new results, coral reefs and their fish communities remain in grave danger because of increasing atmospheric CO2’.”
[SEPP Comment: Yet, there is no dangerous warming of the atmosphere where the greenhouse effect occurs.]
Agriculture Issues & Fear of Famine
India’s wheat production may touch all-time high
No yellow rust has been reported across the wheat-sown area.
By Madhvi Sally, Economic Times of India, Dec 31, 2019
Russia announces plans to adapt due to climate change
By Staff, RTE, Ireland, Jan 5, 2020 [H/t GWPF]
[SEPP Comment: Consider all the land that may be open to farming!]
Un-Science or Non-Science?
Seasonal forecasts challenged by Pacific Ocean warming
By Staff Writers, Melbourne, Australia (SPX) Dec 30, 2019
Link to paper: The Pacific Decadal Oscillation less predictable under greenhouse warming
By Shujun Li, et al. Nature, Climate Change, Dec 16, 2019
[SEPP Comment: When has it been predictable?]
Closing coal plants saves lives, boosts crop yields
By Brooks Hays, Washington (UPI), Jan 6, 2019
Link to paper: The downstream air pollution impacts of the transition from coal to natural gas in the United States
By Jennifer Burney, Nature Sustainability, Jan 6, 2020
“Researchers determined the shuttering of coal plants between 2005 and 2016 saved approximately 26,610 lives and 570 million bushels of corn, soybeans and wheat.”
[SEPP Comment: Precise speculation? Based on highly questionable PM 2.5 claims.]
Communicating Better to the Public – Use Yellow (Green) Journalism?
Climate Alarmists Winning the War of Words, Despite Evidence that Nothing Unusual is Happening
By Jay Lehr and Tom Harris, WUWT, Jan 6, 2020
NYT: Australia is Committing Climate Suicide
By Eric Worrall, WUWT, Jan 5, 2020
Communicating Better to the Public – Do a Poll?
Decades of Public Opinion: Climate Change Not on the Radar
By Donna Laframboise, Big Picture News, Jan 6, 2020
Communicating Better to the Public – Use Propaganda
Opinion/Letter: Climate panic is needlessly frightening
Letter by Charles Baddig, Daily Progress, VA, Dec 6, 2020
The information war about astonishing arson figures
By Jo Nova, Her Blog, Jan 8, 2020
Expanding the Orthodoxy
Illegal native vegetation clearing
By Staff, Australian Institute of Criminology, Updated Nov 3, 2017
“Up until the last couple of decades, land and hence native vegetation clearance was a conventional and legally-condoned practice, largely committed to open up land for agriculture but standard for any private landowner wishing to modify the environment.”
As a Young Liberal I know it’s time to stop turning climate change into a culture war
The climate change debate in Australia has become a poisoned well, but it is our generation that will face the reality of it
By Chaneg Torres, The Guardian, Jan 1, 2020 [Australia]
“The NSW Liberal party’s youth wing recognises this a particularly important issue facing our generation, as our generation will have to face the risks brought about by climate change.
“It is the duty of government to be awake to the challenges of the future. As the great conservative thinker Edmund Burke recognised, current generations hold the present in trust for the future. And climate change is a significant risk that will affect the future of my generation.”
JetBlue says to go carbon neutral by July 2020
By Staff Writers, New York (AFP), Jan 6, 2020
[SEPP Comment: What happens when they run out of space to plant trees?]
Questioning European Green
The Role of Distributed Generation in the UK Blackout of 9 August 2019
By John Constable, GWPF, Jan 4, 2020
Link to one study: Investigation into 9 August 2019 power outage
By Staff, Ofgem, Accessed Jan 7, 2020
Link to second study: Great Britain power system disruption review
Review of the power disruption on 9 August 2019 by the Energy Emergencies Executive Committee (E3C).
By Staff, E3C for the UK government, Jan 3, 2020
“The two studies are as far as I can tell entirely consistent, but they are complementary; and they need to be studied together.”
Germany’s Green Energy Faceplant
By Steven Hayward, Power Line, Jan 8, 2020
“Green” Wood-Burning Making Munich Germany’s Air Dirtier Than NSW – Even As Bush Fires Rage!
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Jan 7, 2020
Opposition Emerges: German Conservatives Reject EU’s “Green New Deal”…”Threatens Freedom, Prosperity, Economy”
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Jan 4, 2020
Questioning Green Elsewhere
Green New Dealers Can Agree: No Climate Armageddon
By Larry Bell, Newsmax, Jan 6, 2019
Problems of Industrial Electrification (forced decarbonization on the firing line)
By Mark Krebs and Tom Tanton, Master Resource, Jan 9, 2020
Bank of England won’t print money for green revolution, says Mark Carney
By Tim Wallace, The Telegraph, Via GWPF, Jan 9, 2020
The Political Games Continue
House passes sweeping bill to target spread of toxic ‘forever chemicals’
By Rebecca Beitsch, The Hill, Jan 10, 2020
[SEPP Comment: According to the website of the Environmental Working Group, PFAS chemicals include widely-used substances used to make Teflon, fire-fighting foam, cosmetics, waterproofing compounds, etc. https://www.ewg.org/pfaschemicals/what-are-forever-chemicals.html This law is another example of politicians finding it simpler to ban chemicals in response to pressure groups rather than understanding dose-response studies and controlling use when chemicals are actually found harmful. How many millions died of preventable malaria after the US banned DDT – after it was used to help eliminate malaria in the US?]
Biden tells coal miners to “learn to code”
The 2020 presidential hopeful advises coal miners to move into new industries — but it’s not that simple.
By Alexandra Kelly, The Hill, Dec 31, 2019
[SEPP Comment: Does Mr. Biden know how to identify an improper do loop?]
Cap-and-Trade and Carbon Taxes
Harvard Economics Professor: Global Carbon Tax, Give the Money to China
By Eric Worrall, WUWT, Jan 7, 2020
Link to article: We must tackle global energy inequality before it’s too late
By Kenneth Rogoff, The Guardian, Jan 6, 2020
[SEPP Comment: Energy inequality is an absurd term. Until the 1860s the inhabitants of the Americas did not know what to do with that black stuff coming out of the ground.]
EPA and other Regulators on the March
How Much Federal Regulation Was There in 2019?
By Ryan Young, CEI, Dec 31, 2019
EPA employees push ‘bill of rights’ to protect scientific integrity
By Rebecca Beitsch, The Hill, Jan 7, 2020
[SEPP Comment: How about the rights of public to receive honest evaluations based on the scientific method?]
Reform USAID energy aid policies now!
By Paul Driessen and David Wojick, WUWT, Jan 6, 2020
Energy Issues – Non-US
Tata Port Talbot: First minister raises energy price concerns
By Staff, BBC, Jan 6, 2020
“Just under half of Tata’s 8,385-strong UK workforce are based in Port Talbot.”
Energy Issues – Australia
Coal stations more reliable in a crisis. Renewable power, interconnectors are fragile and risky!
By Jo Nova, Her Blog, Jan 5, 2020
Energy Issues — US
In 2018, the United States consumed more energy than ever before
By Allan McFarland, EIA, Dec 28, 2019
Primary Energy Production by Source
By Staff, Monthly Energy Review, EIA, Dec 2019
Energy Dominance: US Set Record for Energy Consumption in 2018!
By David Middleton, WUWT, Jan 10, 2020
Oil and Natural Gas – the Future or the Past?
MEMGA! Leviathan natural gas field comes online $150M under budget
By David Middleton, WUWT, Jan 5, 2020
The World’s Next Energy Bonanza
Even more than fracking, tapping oceanic methane hydrates could soon upend the global energy landscape.
By Alex Gilbert, Morgan Bazilian, and Sterling Loza, Foreign Policy, Jan 9, 2020
[SEPP Comment: Highly unlikely that huge amounts of money will be spent on developing this resource in the near future as long as hydraulic fracturing remains a low-cost alternative.]
U.S. LNG exports soar in 2019 but supply glut may await in 2020
By Scott DiSavino, Reuters, Dec 30, 2019
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Solar and Wind
A $1 Billion Solar Plant Was Obsolete Before It Ever Went Online
SolarReserve’s Crescent Dunes received backing from Citigroup and the Obama Energy Department but couldn’t keep pace with technological advances.
By Chris Martin and Nic Querolo, Bloomberg, Jan 6, 2020
Another Expensive Solar Scheme Bites the Dust
By Norman Rogers, American Thinker, Jan 8, 2020
Siemens-Gamesa Bags Deal for Mammoth 2.64-GW Virginia Offshore Wind Project
By Sonal Patel, Power Mag, Jan 8, 2020
A suggestion for meeting the UK Government’s renewable energy target because the adopted use of windfarms cannot meet it
By Richard S. Courtney, SPPI Reprint, 2006
The 2006 Annual Prestigious Lecture to The North of England Institute of Mining and Mechanical Engineers and The Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (North East) held on Thursday 26th October 2006 A suggestion for meeting the UK Government’s renewable energy target because the adopted use of windfarms cannot meet it.
Feds Back Construction of Largest U.S. Solar Farm
By Darrell Proctor, Power Mag, Jan 2, 2020
[SEPP Comment: There is no indication the government will subsidize it.]
Energy & Environmental Newsletter: January 6, 2020
By John Droz, Jr. Master Resource, Jan 6, 2020
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Energy — Other
A woodchip mill is better for the environment than greens are
By Jo Nova, Her Blog, Jan 7, 2020
Study: Snake River dam removal would cost $2.3B, jeopardize regional economies
By Mallory Gruben, The Daily News, Jan 7, 2020 [H/t Ken Schlichte]
[SEPP Comment: The greens are gathering to oppose these 50-year-old resources providing voltage regulation, needed for grid reliability, using what is called renewable energy. Are the Columbia River dams next?]
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Vehicles
America’s Climate Friendly E-Scooter Carnage
By Eric Worrall, WUWT, Jan 10, 2020
Guest post by Rud Istvan,, WUWT, Jan 10, 2020
Health, Energy, and Climate
How sick is this planet?
By John Robson, Climate Discussion Nexus, Jan 8, 2020
Top 10 Junk Science And Bogus Health Claims ACSH Debunked In 2019
By Alex Berezow, ACSH, Dec 26, 2019
“As is the case every year, 2019 was full of junk science, bogus health claims, misinformation, and outright lies. We debunked scores of them this year, but the following list is what we consider the top 10.” [Presented in the article.]
How I Was Manned
Guest post by Phillip Goggans, WUWT, Jan 9, 2020
“He took the case for climate catastrophism to be so simple and straightforward that even a ‘sixteen-year-old can understand it.’”
Other Scientific News
PhD centre will nurture new leaders in Earth observation
By Staff Writers, Leeds UK (SPX) Jan 07, 2020
“The Centre for Satellite Data in Environmental Science (SENSE) will bring together expertise in satellite remote sensing, climate change, and advanced data science to nurture the next generation of Earth observation researchers.”
[SEPP Comment: Will it be committed to the scientific method?]
Other News that May Be of Interest
Early modern humans cooked starchy food in South Africa, 170,000 years ago
By Staff Writers, Johannesburg, South Africa (SPX) Jan 07, 2020
Link to paper: Cooked starchy rhizomes in Africa 170 thousand years ago
By Lyn Wadley, et al. Science, Jan 3, 2020
Humans were making tools out of stone more than 1 million years ago
By Brooks Hays, Washington (UPI), Jan 7, 2020
BELOW THE BOTTOM LINE:
Notable & Quotable: Climate Change Alarmism
‘European cities will be sunk beneath rising seas as Britain is plunged into a ‘Siberian’ climate by 2020.’
Mark Townsend and Paul Harris writing at The Guardian.com, Feb. 21, 2004:, Via WSJ, Jan 5, 2020
Scientific American: Store Renewable Energy as Liquified Air
By Eric Worrall, WUWT, Jan 5, 2020
1. U.S. Economy Added 145,000 Jobs in December
Employers have added jobs for record 10 years, longest stretch in 80 years of data
By Eric Morath and Amara Omeokwe, WSJ, Jan 10, 2020
TWTW Summary: The article states:
“Women overtook men to hold the majority of U.S. jobs for the first time in a decade, while employers added positions for a record 10th straight year, pointing to a growing and dynamic economy heading into 2020.
“The number of women on nonfarm payrolls exceeded men in December for the first time since mid-2010, the Labor Department said Friday. Women held 50.04% of jobs last month, surpassing men on payrolls by 109,000.”
After a political comment the article continues:
“Overall, the economy added a seasonally adjusted 145,000 jobs last month, and unemployment stayed at a 50-year low of 3.5%. In one dark spot, wages advanced 2.9% from a year earlier, the smallest annual gain since July 2018. Stock-market indexes finished lower Friday after rising earlier in the day, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average briefly crossing the 29000 mark.
“The gap between men and women on payrolls had been narrowing in recent years, reflecting growth in services industries that employ higher numbers of women, especially the booming health-care field. That is a different outcome than the one other time that women outnumbered men—a stretch in 2009 and 2010—when men disproportionately lost construction and manufacturing jobs.
“Women account for a larger share of U.S. adults but are less likely to work than men, according to a separate Labor Department survey. But their participation in the labor force has been growing, especially among younger and Hispanic workers, helping drive job gains. Men, meanwhile, are more likely to hold nonpayroll jobs, such as being self-employed or working on farms.
“December’s jobs report capped a decade of payroll gains—the longest stretch in 80 years of record-keeping.
“Employers are adding jobs, despite low unemployment, by pulling workers off the sidelines—including women, Hispanics, blacks and those with lower levels of education that have historically faced barriers to employment. However, those jobs are often in lower-paying fields, and those workers tend to be paid less than white, male counterparts.
“An alternative measure, which captures underemployed and those marginally attached to the workforce, the U-6, fell to 6.7%, the lowest on records back to 1994. But the share of adults working or looking for work held steady last month at 63.2% and remains well down from a peak of 67.3% in 2000.” [Boldface added]
After several other political type comments, the article concludes with:
“For the decade, the U.S. added 22.6 million jobs, a dramatic turnaround from the 2000s, when the economy shed nearly 1 million. Still, in percentage terms, the 2010s were the second weakest decade for payroll growth on records back to the 1940s.”
TWTW Comments: The unemployment rate of 3.5% is well below the 5% that, a few years ago, many popular economists were predicting as impossible in a modern economy. According to figures by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), 3.5% is the lowest unemployment rate since the late 1960s when about 2 million more Americans were on military active duty (now about 1.35 million), many not voluntarily. Further, over the past six months the black unemployment rate has been below 6%, the lowest ever calculated since BLS started compiling those numbers in the early 1970s.
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