Royal Dutch Shell is concerned we won’t sequester away enough of that pollutant, carbon dioxide.
Carbon capture and storage [CCS], a way of cutting emissions from industry by burying them underground, needs more state support for the European Union to meet clean-energy goals, a Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA) adviser said.
“We’ve got to be clear that the EU’s climate goals in the long run cannot be met without clear policy intervention and that CCS is vital for the delivery of that,” Graeme Sweeney, who advises Shell on carbon-dioxide strategy, said by telephone. — Bloomberg
If Royal Dutch Shell had so much as suggested that the warming threat might be exaggerated, a team of activists from Greenpeace, WWF and the IPCC would issue press releases overnight declaring “Vested Interests Promote Doubt and Denial”. Other lobbyists like, say, The Royal Society, would write a letter to Shell blasting it for “disinformation“.
But when Shell asks for more government handouts to fund its ventures in Carbon Capture and Storage, the vested interest is obvious, but the apoplexy and conspiracist accusations are nowhere to be seen. Shell, of course, sells oil, but it also sells CCS. And things haven’t been going well for Shell’s carbon storage projects. The EU carbon price has crashed, taking all the fun (and profits) out of carbon capture.
“We’ve made limited progress,” Sweeney said. “It’s time for us all to recognize that we really need a reset if we’re going to make all of this work.”
The first phase of a European Commission program to finance as many as 12 demonstration plants failed to fund a single one as member states were unable to supply the required matching funds by the deadline. Nine projects applied for funding under a second round that closes July 3, the commission’s website shows.
Sweeney sees a possible three to five demonstration projects being built in the EU, putting it on course to start commercial CCS plants in the late 2020s or early 2030s. He’s also chairman of the European Technology Platform for Zero-Emission Fossil-Fuel Power Plants, or ZEP.” — Bloomberg
Big Oil has been demonized as the shady-hand influencing governments to get policies that give them profits. But the profits Big-Oil hunts are the green-gravy-train type, not the ones dependent on the oil price (which they will get in any case, because demand for oil is inelastic). In the end, Big Government is bigger than Big Oil, and it bought off most the sector off long ago by offering big-subsidies.
To be fair on Shell, they are just doing what any good corporate does — following the money. The profits that are at risk on the Shell annual return are not the ones from oil, but the ones from carbon capture. The numbers men at Shell know that no matter what anyone says about renewables, they are no threat at all to their oil sales (who wants a solar car?). But if governments stop buying the carbon-capture meme, there goes the one and only customer for the CCS.
Long ago, Exxon’s crime was to suggest there were “gaps in the science”. It was vilified, even though it had been funding climate change research for 25 years, including the work of IPCC authors at major universities. Ponder that The Royal Society is so under the spell of the global warming doctrine that it opposed a corporate which funded scientific research. But when corporations trumpet the profoundly anti-science notion of “consensus” and exploit that to gain profits from taxpayers, that’s OK. There are no scientific observations that suggest the public or the planet would benefit from carbon capture. We know climate models don’t work. Who does the Royal Society serve? Not science, and not citizens.
As Andrew Bolt would say, it’s not about the principle, it’s about the side.
And for Anthony A., can I just cryptically say, thank you! I owe you a letter and it’s on the way. I’m thinking of you. :- )
It’s not rocket science. If energy costs more, that means we have to make do with less of it, or make do with less of something else. Thus if the government forces everyone to pay more for electricity, companies have less spare cash to employ people. Their margins are tighter, they can’t make and sell as many products. So when we are told the clean energy revolution is creating jobs, is it virtually self-evident that’s a mythical fairy claim.
I say “virtually”, because it is theoretical possible it could work, but only if this green power provided some productivity or efficiency gain — that is, if it helped us build more widgets, bake more cakes or warm more toes. In the case of windturbines, the big hope is that they reduce emissions, lower CO2 globally, and in turn stop storms, tornados, floods and what-not and gave us perfect weather again (like the kind we never had).
Might as well bury bottles of money I say. More jobs. Less cost. No infrasound, and no dead bats.
Each green job in Britain costs £100,000 (and 3.7 other jobs):
The Telegraph points out how expensive it is to support a wind-industry job. My plan to bury bottles with £50,000 apiece in them could halve the cost and employ just as many people.
- A new analysis of government and industry figures shows that wind turbine owners received £1.2billion in the form of a consumer subsidy, paid by a supplement on electricity bills last year. They employed 12,000 people, to produce an effective £100,000 subsidy on each job.
- “Among the examples of extremely high subsidies effectively for job creation is Greater Gabbard, a scheme of 140 turbines 12 miles off the Suffolk coast. It received £129 million in consumer subsidy in the 12 months to the end of February, double the £65million it received for the electricity it produced. It employs 100 people at its headquarters in Lowestoft, receiving, in effect, £1.3 million for every member of staff.” — Telegraph, 15 June 2013
- In Scotland the VERSO study showed for each Green Job created, 3.7 were lost. — BBC, Feb 2011
(What’s worse than one green job? 76,000 green jobs.)
- Robert Norris, Renewable UK’s spokesman, said:“… by 2021, more than 76,000 people will be working in the British wind industry in full-time, well-paid green-collar jobs. — Telegraph, 15 June 2013
In Spain for every green job created 2.2 jobs were lost:
“Calzada, an economist, studied Spain’s green technology program and found that each green job created in Spain cost Spanish taxpayers $770,000. Each Wind Industry job cost $1.3 million to create. But Calzada’s study found that for every four jobs created by Spain’s expensive green technology program, nine jobs were lost. Electricity generated was so expensive that each “green” megawatt installed in the power grid destroyed five jobs elsewhere in the economy by raising business costs. — CBN News, Dec 26, 2011
In Italy, each green job cost 5 jobs from the rest of the economy:
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In history studies of the Great Global Warming Scare, people will ask, is this the bargaining stage or the start of acceptance?
Adapting to _ not just fighting _ climate change is taking the heat out of global warming talk
Seth Borenstein for The Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) — Efforts to curb global warming have quietly shifted as greenhouse gases inexorably rise.
The conversation is no longer solely about how to save the planet by cutting carbon emissions. It’s becoming more about how to save ourselves from the warming planet’s wild weather. — Newsdaily
On the five stages of grief, this is partly acceptance, but mostly it’s bargaining. Fans of Man-Made Global Warming are realizing they can’t have Deity Status — where they manage global financial markets and play God with the weather. Instead they hope they can still play hero, and direct less financially lucrative projects. They just want to hold back the tides, that sort of stuff.
It was Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s announcement last week of an ambitious plan to stave off New York City’s rising seas with flood gates, levees and more that brought this transition into full focus.
After years of losing the fight against rising global emissions of heat-trapping gases, governments around the world are emphasizing what a U.N. Foundation scientific report calls “managing the unavoidable.” — Newsdaily
So we finally get the first hints of acceptance on the big economic aims — this is the first recognition from key players that reducing emissions, setting up markets and global deals might not work. Don’t underestimate how important this is, it’s a big step because this was where the money always was — the $176b carbon market, and the $257b renewables investment market. The mitigation barrell is large because it carries the renewables like wind and solar too. It’s global. Building levee’s is not.
Al Gore says “I was wrong” (a bit)
Adaption is very much a second-best option. It was never the main aim at all. Al Gore didn’t want us to go there. He saw it as a cop out. Now he says “I was wrong” — Adapting is just as important as mitigation.
In his 1992 book “Earth in the Balance,” Gore compared talk of adapting to climate change to laziness that would distract from necessary efforts.
But in his 2013 book “The Future,” Gore writes bluntly: “I was wrong.” He talks about how coping with rising seas and temperatures is just as important as trying to prevent global warming by cutting emissions.
This article coincidentally wins the prize for the silliest justification for a big money program I have ever seen. Mayor Bloomberg says we should spend $20b on any old problem: real, unreal, imaginary, ludicrous. Whatever.
“Whether you believe climate change is real or not is beside the point,” New York’s Bloomberg said in announcing his $20 billion adaptation plans. “The bottom line is: We can’t run the risk.”
The risk of what exactly? One day our sun will turn into a red giant and incinerate the planet. Whether you believe it is real or not, is “beside the point”. We need that solar deflection shield. (Spend now, spend later, give me your money.) The Bloomberg line neutralizes every excuse. Why count? The numbers — the time — the degrees — the cost, it’s all “beside the point”.
So this news article is the ra-ra small-shift-coming “nothing to see here” marketing view. Borenstein hopes we won’t notice their disguised admission that 225,000 windmills won’t make a jot of difference. It doesn’t admit that all the costly emission schemes were wasted money. It is still in denial about the science (still at stage one). Where is the evidence?
This approach is just trying to save face and salvage something from the ruins. But the global ambitions have come crashing back to Earth. Adapting is a “local” thing.
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I think it’s my Chinese Year of the Gremlin. Yesterday some node belonging to our giant service provider broke near us. We have had no net access for two days. My new big beautiful monster sits mute. After another hour on the help line, they said the phrase no one in the modern era likes to hear (especially on a Friday): that’s ”four working days”. But with some creativity and determination I now have that tiny mouseless lap-top working in an odd corner with a wireless-thingy-modem balanced on a tissue box on a windowsill. Still, it’s better than the dumbphone.
Hope your techno stars are lining up and the electrons are behaving in your house.
Pre-draft Update: I wrote all this before the latest twist came. For foreign readers: gawk, supposedly in March at an Opposition fundraiser, a menu listed an insulting Julia Gillard Kentuky Fried Quail (and worse). It turns out the menu was not even used, it was an inhouse mockup. No one at the Liberal fundraiser saw it, let alone approved it. The reason I wrote at all about it was that it should never have wasted so much airtime. Like Parliament, like blogs. It is almost as if trolls are running our national debate. UPDATE #2: Worse. The resturanteur who wrote the insult turns out to be a Labor man.
How easily people are diverted.
The parody of our “national” conversation is literally reduced to a bad joke. The desperate Julia Gillard is milking a spot of tasteless humor made by a Liberal supporter, wringing all the political mileage she can get out of it. It is everywhere in the news today. A waste of bandwidth. She says a comment that Tony Abbott didn’t make, and doesn’t approve of, tell us something about the culture of the conservatives. “Join the dots” she snidely implies.
Yes, I say, let’s join-the-dots Julia, let’s talk about “character” and “culture”. But instead of bad jokes in poor taste, let’s talk about something that matters. How about premeditated promises made to the whole nation? Like: There will be no carbon tax; there will be a surplus; we will stop the boats — how many votes did those promises garner?
So a Liberal fan made a momentary lapse — Gillard made the surplus commitment 165 times. These were premeditated, official failures said calmly and with intent. The bad joke cost the nation nothing. The election deceit — countless billions. It may also have cost thousands of jobs and, worst of all, a thousand lives lost at sea.
The Liberals involved [or not, as per the update] have apologized. Gillard has not. She blamed the hung parliament, the Greens, the global economy, anyone but herself.
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The bottom line is that a third of people are concerned enough to be willing to act, a third say they are concerned but are only paying it lip service, and a third are openly skeptical.
What matters is that 63% of people around the world don’t want their governments to take any money from them to address environmental issues.
There is constant media spin that skeptics are a tiny fringe minority. (See Al Gore deny a third of the population. See the BBC call them mavericks and say they give too much weight to “fringe views”.) The marketeers pushing the meme know that many people are swayed away from “extreme” views and towards the dominant paradigm. Life is just “easier” if you follow the herd, so the big-scare campaign scores a free kick if the public believe that skeptics are rare. If the media reported the situation accurately, more people would be happy to sit in the “skeptical” camp as it would be perceived as equally valid.
As usual, those who believe in man-made global warming use every deceptive trick to push their policy, while skeptics simply benefit if the truth is told.
While skeptics just outnumber believers in Australia, around the world about a third of the population is openly skeptical and more say they believe. Campaigners may pool the 46% of people who are are “environmentally motivated” with the 20% who are “technological optimists” (who believe technology will solve environmental problems) to get 66%. That would make two thirds of the population “believers” — but what does “believer” mean when 63% of the population does not want government policies to cost them a cent? It means they don’t believe very much.
Australians are leading skeptics and more polarized than anywhere else
The Australian reports it as “Sceptics put heat on climate change.”
CLIMATE change sceptics outnumber believers, according to an OECD study that shows how the debate has sharply divided Australians
It shows 45 per cent of Australians think environmental dangers are exaggerated and are reluctant to pay for government environmental policies.
In contrast, 42 per cent of Australians believe the environmental challenges are real and think the government should take action, which they are prepared to pay for even if the amount is not matched by other nations.
The most skeptical nations were the Netherlands and Korea. The most polarized: Australia.
The OECD surveyed 12,000 households across Australia, Canada, Chile, France, Israel, Japan, Korea, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland. This survey was carried out in 2011, so the data is already a bit out of date.
There are three main groups: those who are skeptics, those who believe, and the technology optimists who think there is a problem but figure that we’ll find a way to solve the problem.
Most of the graphs here came from this OECD link.
Paradoxes upon paradoxes: We care about the climate, but not if we have to pay
Fig 2.6 is the most important. Contradictions abound. 45% of Australians think it’s overrated, yet nearly 80% say they are willing to sacrifice their lifestyle. But almost all of those people willing to make a sacrifice, don’t want to spend any money at all on it. Therein lies the rub. The ALP fell for the 80% statistic and saw a popular policy, but it’s a vaporous popularity — 7 out of 8 people who “care” won’t sacrifice a dollar for the cause. When tested, concern for the environment is more a badge than a real concern.
- Over 40% of Australians and people from the Netherlands say “Environmental impacts are frequently overstated.” This is higher than the other countries surveyed.
- Almost 80% of Australians say they are “willing to make compromised in my current lifestyle for the benefit of the environment.” (The least willing were The Netherlands, (~55%) and the most willing were those in Japan (90%+).
- Almost 70% of Australians also say “policies introduced by the government to address environmental issues should not cost me extra money”.
- Around 60% of people also think “protecting the environment is a means of stimulating economic growth.” Which shows how poorly understood the concept of “economic growth” is.
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This beautiful graph was posted at Roy Spencer’s and WattsUp, and no skeptic should miss it. I’m not sure if everyone appreciates just how piquant, complete and utter the failure is here. There are no excuses left. This is as good as it gets for climate modelers in 2013.
John Christy used the best and latest models, he used all the models available, he has graphed the period of the fastest warming and during the times humans have emitted the most CO2. This is also the best data we have. If ever any model was to show the smallest skill, this would be it. None do.
Scores of models, millions of data-points, more CO2 emitted than ever before, and the models crash and burn. | Graph: John Christy. Data: KMNI.
Don’t underestimate the importance of the blue-green circles and squares that mark the “observations”. These are millions of radiosondes, and two independent satellite records. They agree. There is no wiggle room, no overlap.
Any sane modeler can only ask: “But how can the climate modelers pretend their models are working?” Afterall, predicting the known past with a model is not-too-hard; the modeler tweaks the assumptions, fiddles with the fudge factors, and adjusts until the lines mostly fit. Yet the best models of 2013 are not even adjusted to fit the best data, during the peak phase of emissions and the warmest period.
Presumably the modelers must be convinced that this is noise, a temporary deviation, and that the warming will come. Is there any other word for this than denial? (Prof Matthew England on The Science Show says: “Change is actually completely in line with projections and consistent with projections that go out to three, four, five degrees Celsius warming by the end of the century. The last three decades have been closer to 0.2 degrees Celsius warming, so I contest that 0.1 anyway.“) He still won’t admit the models of 1990 categorically failed, let alone the modern “super” versions.
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For all the other news…
Climate Analytics say that developed nations have paid $35.9 billion dollars into the UN Aid program called FastStart. This was the project rescued from the aftermath of the 2009 Copenhagen climate convention. Somehow $3 billion of private finance has been tossed in as well, making it nearly $39 billion since late 2009.
As usual, when other-people’s-money is spent on the poorest of the poor, the poor seem to get no say, and not much use out of it either.
[Bloomberg] “Seventy-one percent of the total finance went to emission-reduction ventures rather than adaptation projects such as water conservation or flood defense, today’s report shows.”
Sooner or later, the aid-recipients are going to suffer through a flood or a drought (thanks to climate-sameness). But two thirds of this aid money won’t add up to a dime’s worth of protection. Seventy percent of the funds were used to stop emissions of a fertilizing trace gas instead of preparing people against the ravages of the weather. Indeed most of the money was spent reducing something that would be considered an asset if not for the decree of climate models that we already know are wrong.
Hey, but it’s only $27 billion or so wasted.
A billion here, a billion there. Pretty soon we’ll be talking real money.
There are a lot of things we don’t know about climate but we do know CO2 emissions are strongly linked to GDP (see the UNEP graph below). Countries which don’t emit much CO2, don’t have much purchasing power (or health, wealth or electricity either). So Joy! There’s a stronger link between CO2 and wealth, than CO2 and the weather.
There is more evidence that reducing CO2 emissions will keep poor people poor than there is that it will change the climate.
CO2-emissions versus GDP graph Source: UNEP (click to enlarge).
Showing all the economic savvy that got the EU where it is today, Europeans have coughed up even more money than they promised to give.
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Image by Luc Viatour www.Lucnix.be
The Moon has such a big effect — moving 70% of the matter on the Earth’s surface every day, that it seems like the bleeding obvious to suggest that just maybe, it also affects the air, the wind, and causes atmospheric tides. Yet the climate models assume the effect is zero or close to it.
Indeed, it seems so obvious, it’s a “surely they have studied this before” moment. Though, as you’ll see, the reason lunar effects may have been ignored is not just “lunar-politics” and a lack of funding, but because it’s also seriously complex. Keep your brain engaged…
Ian Wilson and Nikolay Sidorenkov have published a provocative paper, Long-Term Lunar Atmospheric Tides in the Southern Hemisphere. It’s an epic effort of 14,000 words and a gallery of graphs. As these atmospheric tides swirl around the planet they appear to be creating standing waves of abnormal air-pressure that slowly circle the planet, once every 18 years. If this is right, then it could be the key to finally understanding, and one day predicting, the mysterious Pacific ENSO pattern that so affects the global climate. Even at this early stage, brave predictions are on the table — the atmospheric lunar tides should favor the onset of an El Nino either during the summer of 2018-19 or possibly the following southern summer. Wouldn’t it be a major step forward if we could predict the extremes?
Atmospheric tides* might be seeding the El Niños / La Nina pattern
Each summer, there are four stationary high pressure systems in the air at sea level around the Southern Hemisphere. These large regular patterns are spread evenly around the southern half of the planet, spaced at about 90 degrees longitude to each other. Each summer they reform again in roughly the same spot. (See the points marked “H” in Figure 1 below).
Fig. (1a). The NOAA SST anomaly map for the 25th of January 1981.
About 3km up above the ocean the air has its own patterns of air pressure, and the atmospheric tides appear to be standing waves of abnormal pressure (higher or lower than normal) that slowly circumnavigate the planet. There are four peaks in these standing waves, again spread evenly around the southern hemisphere. In addition, it appears that there are two epochs, it seems, the first is from 1947-1970 when all four abnormal pressure cells were high (and La Nina’s were more common). The second is from 1971 – 1994 when all four were low (and El Ninos were predominant).
There are two alternating patterns – before 1970, and after
1947-1970 — Four high pressure standing waves lead to more La Nina’s
In the first epoch, once every 4.5 years, the four main regions of drifting high-pressure cells would have passed over and strengthened the four large semipermanent high-pressure systems at sea-level.
Possibly the most influential stationary summer high occurs near Easter Island in the Pacific (see the map below). High’s rotate counter-clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere, so having two stacked high pressure systems would presumably make the East-Pacific Trade Winds stronger. These kind of conditions would favour the onset of La Nina events over El Nino events.
1971-1994 — Four low pressure standing waves lead to more El Nino’s
In the second epoch, roughly every 4½ years, the roaming low pressure cells would drift on top of the sea-level high-pressure cells. “Lows” rotate clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere, and “highs” rotate counter-clockwise, so having a low zone parked over a high zone tends to neutralize the prevailing trade winds. Thus the high near Easter Island is weakened by a roaming low pressure pattern in the air above, so the trade winds slow across the Pacific.
Normally the prevailing winds drive water from East to West, allowing cold water to well up near Peru, and warm water to sit over the Western Pacific. As the prevailing trade winds slow, the cold water stops rising, the ocean stops mixing, and the surface heats up. The effect on weather and lives extends for thousands and thousands of miles in all directions. The fishing industry off Peru is devastated by the warming seas and the nearby Peruvian hinterland experiences severe crop losses caused by torrential rains and land-slides. Eastern Australia suffers through a terrible drought at the same time as large areas of north-western Mexico and south-eastern United States experience wetter than normal winters.
When a high pressure cell in the standing wave lies over the high pressure summer semi-stationary high, the anticlockwise circulation is strengthened. This increases the prevailing trade winds (which run East to West across that part of the Pacific). This sets up La Nina type conditions.
The lower three kilometres of the Pacific Ocean is near freezing, and during an El Niño the calm ocean means that water stays cold, locked away under the surface. For a few months, the heat accumulates in the top layers, and the “stored cold” lies in wait for the El Niño to subside.
So why don’t we get an El Niño or La Nina exactly every 4½ years?
The period (technically 4.65 years) is not a whole integer, and ENSO’s form only at certain times of the year. In Spanish El Niño means “the boy child” (specifically Jesus Christ) because the effects on South America usually become obvious around Christmas. So some years the standing wave hovers over the right point, but at the wrong time of year. The overlaying cells of the standing wave and the surface highs have to coincide during the right season to seed an ENSO pattern.
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Stephan Lewandowsky (and John Cook) got excited that Barack Obama ‘retweeted’ the (fallacious) 97% consensus study. In The Conversation, Stephan Lewandowsky made it the leading line (right under the name-calling headline):
“When President Obama last week tweeted that “97% of scientists agree: climate change is real, man-made, and dangerous” it drew the attention of his 31 million followers to the most recent study pointing to the consensus in climate science.”
As a Professor of Psychology on a academic site, we might assume Lewandowsky might be more factual and less like a direct marketing campaign. (Dear Stephan, there is no chance 31 million followers read his tweets. Twitter is not like that. Obama is following 662,021 people. You think he reads them?)
Worse, that tweet was not by Barack Obama. The @barackobama account is run by an activist group called Organizing for Action (OFA). It’s the fourth biggest twitter account in the world, but Obama gave the account to OFA earlier this year, and he doesn’t appear to have used it since. (Still it’s not like Lewandowsky’s career depends on understanding how people work, and how to spot a fake right? Oh. Wait… )
OFA use Obama’s photo and his name, and at @barackobama they acknowledge that they are running the account. They add that “Tweets from the President are signed -bo”, as if he might use it, someday. Confusingly many tweets end in a link with “OFA.BO/…” but that’s not the President either. Perhaps the President has used the account to tweet since he handed it over, but The Atlantic Wire said the last tweet from him was Jan 21. I searched 1,000 tweets on Snapbird and couldn’t find any signed “-bo” since then.
Here’s OFA tweeting with Obama’s face and name:
Then there is the last real tweet from the man himself, that I can find:
Obama’s staff used to write a lot of his tweets anyway, and you might ask “what’s the difference?” The difference is that Organizing for Action doesn’t work for Obama, they are supposedly independent:
“The @BarackObama Twitter account clearly states in its description that it is controlled by Organizing for Action,” the OFA official told us, “and this is a Twitter handle that has been controlled and used for years by a nongovernmental organization — Obama for America — without any problems with confusion.”
Kaune points out that OFA’s management of @BarackObama is “no different than Senator So-and-so who doesn’t know how to use an account and has a staffer do that.” But in that case, the social media-savvy staffer works directing for the senator. OFA and Obama have no official relationship.
Which brings us to the curious point that even though OFA tweet in the name of the leader of the Democratic Party, they are legally a non-partisan organization. Figure out how that works.
The arms-length relationship between Obama and Organizing For Action is based on its legal status as a non-partisan organization. As Politico reported in February, the organization updated its guidelines to make that point clearly.
[The Atlantic Wire] “The organization on Wednesday quietly posted new guidelines on its website formally declaring its intention to stay out of campaign politics.
“Neither OFA nor its chapters will be involved in any way in elections or partisan political activity,” OFA wrote. “Its exclusive purpose is public policy advocacy and development, and in particular, both enactment of President Obama’s legislative agenda and the identification and advancement of other goals for progressive change at the state and local level.
They also have tax exempt 501(c)4 status. I don’t suppose they had to wait 29 months for approval from the IRS, had their donor list leaked, or faced letters with 90 questions?
OFA are an independent lobby group, that are also “non-partisanly” hosting a web-page calling Republicans names: http://my.barackobama.com/Hold-Climate-Deniers-Accountable.
I guess if they had convincing arguments they wouldn’t need to name-call?
Twitter has “verified” the BarackObama account, and you might ask what verified means anymore. Twitter says it is “used to establish authenticity of identities on Twitter”. As if it’s authentic for a team of people who aren’t Barack Obama to use his name, position and photo to send out partisan messages in an officially non-partisan way. Twitter, I don’t think this is going to work out well.
As for Stephan Lewandowsky, and John Cook, we’d hope they’d write their papers with more care than their blog posts, but last time I looked they were still claiming 78,000 skeptics could have seen their survey at Cook’s site, where they never hosted a link. Don’t miss the “8 step version of the scientific method according to Lew and Cook” at Australian Climate Madness. I’m pretty sure the University of Bristol is not aware what it has taken on.
There is some back-story here:
h/t to Neville for editing help.
[The Local] A combination of an icy winter and a chilly spring has meant that for the first time ever in the month of June, skiers will have the option of heading to the pistes in the French Pyrénées, French TV TF1 reported on Wednesday.
After recent cold weather, bosses at the ski station Porte Puymorens in the Pyrénées-Orientales region of the mountain range that divides France from Spain have taken the exceptional step to re-open the slopes this weekend after they had closed them at the end of the season in April.
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Is it cold where you are?
Increasing CO2 makes life easier for plants that live in hot dry places.
Thanks to satellites we know the world has “greened up” since 1980, but we were not sure how much of that was due to the fertilizing effect of CO2. To solve that, one group suggests we need to look in warm arid environments where water is the predominant limiting factor. These are the areas which ought to show whether CO2 was really helping plants grow, because when there is more CO2 it enables plants to use water more efficiently for photosynthesis. In places where there is already a lot of water, it won’t make as much difference. So Donohue et al. did that, studying regions with a low level of rainfall. They found that the fertilization effect is real and significant and that the cover in these arid zones increased 11% from 1982 – 2010 and CO2 played a significant role.
(Thanks to pollution, trees are invading grasslands. Whatever will the Greens do to get us back to the Halycon pre-carbon days? Call Gunns?)
CO2 may be the only “pollution” that greens the deserts.
“Using gas exchange theory, we predict that the 14% increase in atmospheric CO2 (1982–2010) led to a 5 to 10% increase in green foliage cover in warm, arid environments. Satellite observations, analysed to remove the effect of variations in rainfall, show that cover across these environments has increased by 11%.”
Our results suggest that [atmospheric CO2] has played an important role in this greening trend, and that, where water is the dominant limit to growth, cover has increased in direct proportion to the CO2-driven rise in Wp.
Figure 2. Analysis extent and spatial distribution of the Fx edge. The analysis extent, over which we determined the annual Fx, is shown in gray. Cells within ±5% of the Fx edge for at least one of the 3-year averages are shown in red
Elevated carbon dioxide making arid regions greener
31 May 2013
AGU Release No. 13-24
WASHINGTON, DC—Scientists have long suspected that a flourishing of green foliage around the globe, observed since the early 1980s in satellite data, springs at least in part from the increasing concentration of carbon dioxide in Earth’s atmosphere. Now, a study of arid regions around the globe finds that a carbon dioxide “fertilization effect” has, indeed, caused a gradual greening from 1982 to 2010.
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Sorry to do this, but now there are no excuses (apart from arthritis, amputation and angina).
Don’t read on if you are a conscientious objector to exercise. The “I don’t have time” excuse doesn’t wash anymore. Though, if you are habitually running to catch the bus, you can now call that an exercise program (when your doc asks, you can say you do the 1-AIT training regime from NTNU -- Trondheim).
If you are sedentary, new research from Norway suggests that if you do just four minutes of high-intensity training three times a week, within 10 weeks your peak ability to take up oxygen will have improved by 10%.
Do you care about VO2max? It’s a measure of aerobic fitness and it’s linked to that factor that trumps all others: “all cause mortality” (ACM). To put this study into perspective, a 10% improvement is only 10%. The fittest people have 100% higher VO2 max that the least fit (eg from about 20mL/kg/min to 40mL/kg/min). But even a 10% improvement in VO2 max can make a difference to your mortality.
A review of results from 102,000 people showed that if people are split into groups of “fitness” the least fit were 70% more likely to die than the most fit (Kodama et al 2009). Dr Mike Nichols summarizes the importance of that result:
The bottom line: people with a VO2 max of 26 or less were 70% more likely, each year, to die of ACM than those with a VO2 max of 38 or greater. In another format: for each increase of 3.5 VO2 you decrease your ACM by about 15%.
How many drugs show comparable results?
For those who stay away from all health-science (and I can understand why), you may have missed that the “consensus” on fitness is currently shifting. Instead of long hours of low impact exercise, there are convincing arguments, and plenty of evidence, to suggest that peak performance is more important.
This study rather takes that to an extreme. They had shown that doing a 4 x 4 program helped (where people do 4 minutes on, 3 minutes off for four rounds, and do it three times a week). In the latest round they compared it to just doing 4 minutes on, 2 days off, and discovered you could get 75% of the benefits in a quarter of the time. (Though I don’t know if there is a catch like a 30-minute-warm-up. There is no mention of that in the press release.)
Fit in twelve minutes a week
(29.05.2013) It is a commonly held perception that getting in shape and staying there requires hard work and hours upon hours of training. New research shows the opposite – it seems that only four minutes of vigorous activity three times per week is enough to be fit and healthy.
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Tim Yeo, conservative MP who heads the UK climate change committee has broken the litany. This is a man who’s wanted to decarbonize the Brits for years, and he has just admitted “natural phases” might be to blame. He is only saying the bleeding obvious, but what happened to the official “no debate” doctrine? What exactly are deniers denying now, and where did that overwhelming evidence go?
Tim Yeo 2009:
“The dying gasps of the deniers will be put to bed. In five years time, no one will argue about a man-made contribution to climate change.”
Before he changed his mind. | Daily Mail, Gerry Peev.
Tim Yeo 2013:
[Telegraph, Matthew Holehouse]: “He (Yeo) insisted such action is “prudent” given the threat climate change poses to living standards worldwide. But, he said, human action is merely a “possible cause”.
Asked on Tuesday night whether it was better to take action to mitigate the effects of climate change than to prevent it in the first place, he said: “The first thing to say is it does not represent any threat to the survival of the planet. None at all. The planet has survived much bigger changes than any climate change that is happening now.
He went on: “Although I think the evidence that the climate is changing is now overwhelming, the causes are not absolutely clear. There could be natural causes, natural phases that are taking place.”
Remember, this is what 90% certainty looks like. It looks like skeptics are winning.
This is not just any old politician shifting gears. Yeo was named “Politician of the Year” at the inaugural 2011 Green Business Awards. James Delingpole pointed out that “Trougher” Yeo had other reasons for being so keen about environmental issues — thousands of other reasons. (Most of them, pounds sterling.) Not to mention that Yeo is Chairman of TMO Renewables, a biofuel company. Indeed, according to the Daily Mail in August 2012 other MPs wre pretty cheesed with the deal:
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Paul Syvret seems to be hoping no one will notice that he doesn’t even try to respond to arguments about wind turbines. His technique to avoid debate is to decree that some other people were wrong once on a different topic. They used a rapid fire technique called a Gish Gallop, so therefore, thusly and henceforth anyone with a rapid fire technique can be dismissed with a handy wave of The Gish. It’s just another label in Syvret’s all-purpose excuse-list for not having a grown up conversation.
Those who have no evidence just make things up and toss insults. Syvret of The Courier Mail defends the wind industry from its critics — not with data about windfarms, but with allegations of imaginary astroturfing and denialism. He uses all his biggest scientific words: it’s “a barrage of BS”, “pseudo-science”, and a crusade run by a rat-bag in an incestuous network. He wants to make sure his readers know the critics are shills and conspiracy nutters because, well… he says so.
The Australian Environment Foundation is his main target today. What’s it guilty of? Well, it links to unpaid bloggers that Syvret doesn’t like: those ” sites promoting climate-change denial (such as junk science queen and conspiracy theorist Jo Nova) .”
It’s guilt by association, and three bonus mistakes in one sentence: Syvret can’t name any science the “deniers” deny, any “junk science” on my site, or any conspiracy theory I promote. Not firing blanks are we Paul?
Spot the real conspiracy theory
Syvret is convinced that money drives skeptics and unnamed “vested interests” conspire with the IPA. He has exactly no evidence to back this up. I don’t think he’s noticed though.
He thinks the critics of windfarms just pretend to be “grassroots”. As if no rational citizen could possibly object to wind towers even though they are expensive, unreliable, and don’t make any difference to CO2 emissions. Indeed any sane Green ought to object to them because there are far better ways to reduce CO2 (if only it mattered). If you care about the environment, wouldn’t you want the green-money spent on something that worked and didn’t kill quite so many bats and birds?
Unlike him, I don’t need to invent conspiracies — I can just talk about systematic flaws and quote studies.
But now I’m just Gishing aren’t I? Too many points, and Syvret can wave The Gish, and 6 million raptors and bats will be grateful. Spared the slicing and dicing thanks to his neutralizing logic.
Now maybe wind farms are getting better at not killing bats and birds; I hear they are improving. And there may be a role for towers in remote areas, or in the future. Perhaps we ought be spending more researching them. But Syrvet’s response to the cost-benefit analysis is essentially to say “You are a paid astroturfer and mentally deficient nut.”
This is not the kind of reasoning that Western Civilization was built on.
Can anyone name a wind project that doesn’t need forced payments from taxpayers to survive and which reduces CO2 emissions in the grid it works in?
If one such “farm” exists, how much it will cost to reduce world temperatures by 0.1 degree with that technology, rounded to the nearest trillion?
Move along here, there’s nothing to see
Is Paul Syvret just another victim of sloppy language and one-sided research? Did he fall for the “denier” label and assume he didn’t need to meet a skeptical scientist, or even read their blogs?
Name-calling bites the name-caller: brain off, parrot-mode engaged — pass along the abuse. He reflexively reeled off “climate change denier” without even investigating the words, let alone the targets — can he name a single person who denies the climate changes? Who is that strange soul who thinks the Earth was once a perfect constant global 15C.
Name-calling serves a diversionary purpose. Some unwitting readers (like Paul) will write the targets off without even hearing their point of view. If you have a megaphone, insults will work for a while. But skeptics have a megaphone too. No wonder thousands of readers are turning off the junk journalism and shifting online to where the real debate is.
Has journalism become a theatre-of-therapy? It’s almost as if Syvret has projected all his own failures onto his opponents. Within the one article, lies the baseless conspiracy theory, the loopy logic, and the urge to whip up loathing in the rent-a-rage crowd. Who is the denier here?
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During the northern winter, there were more speculators in the carbon market than genuine players.
Those bankers must be very concerned about the environment.
Speculators main buyers in EU carbon auctions -report
17 May 2013
LONDON, May 17 (Reuters Point Carbon) – Banks and trading houses bought more than two thirds of the 138 million carbon permits sold by 25 European governments between Nov. 2012 and Feb. 2013 to help power plants and factories comply with the EU Emissions Trading Scheme, an EU Commission report published Friday showed.
Six “credit institutions” and six “investment firms” dominated the 35 auctions held over that period, picking up as much as 80 percent of the allowances sold in January alone, the report said, adding that only one of those companies was eligible to bid on behalf of clients.
Things have changed in the carbon market. From 2005-2012 most allowances were given away free, but now they are being sold at auction. So the period starting Nov 2012 was probably the first sales under the new system. It is expected that the bankers and traders will sell the permits to the power companies in the futures market.
Hat tip: Scott the trader.
Sorry about that spot of maintenance. Out of my hands… back up now.
And you thought advertising or certificates couldn’t get more stupid.
You’ll have to click to go to the Domino site to see the helpful man tell you that “This is Big”.
They probably paid a lot for that ad.
Some of the poor users are not sure what it means. That’s OK, Domino helpfully provides an FAQ page:
Is it the same sugar? Will it function the same way in my recipes?
Yes, it is still 100% pure cane sugar with 15 calories per teaspoon. And, it functions just like all Domino® Pure Cane Granulated Sugar. Use it cup for cup exactly like the original Domino® Pure Cane Granulated Sugar.
Look out. You might think that carbon free sugar would be the ultimate diet-sugar. But it’s not so. Carbon free is not low-calorie. Lucky it is still useable at high temperatures “just like” normal sugar, eh?
Just so everyone can appreciate this special-chemistry-moment: in the sugar molecule below, the grey circles with a “C” are the carbon ones.
A glucose molecule. C stands for Carbon.
Remember the low-carbon crowd that this product appeals to are the ones who think they have science on their side.
To get certification this meaningless takes time:
“In order to earn CarbonFund.org’s CarbonFree® certification, Domino® Sugar products were put through a comprehensive, six-month certification process.”
Here’s another sort of carbon-free sugar. It’s “Organic” too.
Christopher Essex has been entertaining people with it for ages and points out that when your chemistry is this loose anything is possible.
If you can have oxygen free carbon dioxide it is only a small step to having carbon free sugar. You could replace the carbon by, say, silicon from which one might get some kind of abrasive or just take all the carbon away and get water. So next time you drink pure water think of carbon free sugar.
Colleague Juan replies: “Perfect! if you can remove oxygen from carbon dioxide, and carbon from sugar, why not carbon from coal too?…”
The propaganda takes over people’s understanding of science, the advertising gradually erases what they were taught at school, and the population gets that much more confused. The brand-name of science becomes just that much less useful.
The environmentalist movement is attempting a … con. They are stealing the terminology of science to provide cover for an irrational, unscientific fear of industry and technology. And so while they loudly claim to be the tribunes of science, they actually play to and rely on the public’s ignorance of science.
“Get that carbon out of my food!”
Stephen Harper posted a study on this site in 2011, which showed (rather savagely) how effective the propaganda machine has been in undoing all those years of chemistry at school. He randomly asked 100 people in the street and the results show the sugar “carbon free” advertising might work.
- … 37% of people are so convinced carbon is pollution that they think it would be a worthwhile aim to reduce the carbon content of their body. (The ultimate diet, you might say).
- About a quarter of the population… would rather not eat food with carbon in it.
- Nearly half the population think food would be safer without carbon.
I see WUWT had a post on Domino in 2009. It’s been around.
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