JoNova

A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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Unthreaded Week

Sorry about that spot of maintenance. Out of my hands… back up now.

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Rating: 7.5/10 (22 votes cast)
Unthreaded Week, 7.5 out of 10 based on 22 ratings

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146 comments to Unthreaded Week

  • #
    janama

    Surely it’s time for us to develop our own car industry. We are an innovative people capable of developing a new unique range of vehicles suited to our climate and our needs.

    Where are the aussie entrepreneurs? Dick Smith? John Singleton? ….

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    • #
      MadJak

      Why not make drones instead – that would be way more fun

      We could attach stuff to them to blow shit up.

      10

      • #
        Rereke Whakaaro

        Been there, done that, sometimes they fight back.

        10

        • #
          David

          Nothing like an “incoming” to focus the mind and wonder why you didn’t dig the weapon pit just that little bit deeper.

          00

    • #
      KinkyKeith

      Janama

      We have no politicians who are willing to step outside the comfort zone of two terms in office and an amazing pension/super.

      There is no leadership in this country that is based on building a genuine “Better” Australia, all we have is Government that relies on the Dollar Driven leadership of entrepreneurs.

      Entrepreneurs are great, up to a point, since they will do things efficiently, but we need strong management to make sure those business people don’t take short cuts and screw everything up.

      Short termism is rife and we need a turnaround sooner rather than later in the level of effort given by politicians.

      At the moment they get away with feathering their own nests.

      KK :)

      20

      • #
        macha

        You have to count Clive Palmer…regardless of polices, he is AT LEAST haaving a go. Most simply do not have the means.

        20

        • #
          Tim

          Hi Macha

          I haven’t heard or seen anyone asking if he’s still a member of the World Economic Forum (and does this make him an internationalist lever puller?) Or maybe he’s just a simple, dinkum Aussie as he purports.

          00

      • #
        Sceptical Sam

        Leadership? From politicians?

        The less politicians do the better in my view.

        Whenever they try the “leadership” thing the community gets to pick up and pay for the mess.

        Evidence?

        WWI – Political leadership wanting to control markets, trade, trading routes, and economic growth.

        Depression of the 1930s: political leadership taking economic decisions and interfering in the markets to obtain advantage with “begger-thy-neighbour” policies.

        WWII: Fascists wanting to lead their moribund countries to greatness again.

        CAGW: politicians wanting to lead the world out of the greatest moral imperative of our time.

        And so on.

        No. The answer is to get politicians to do nothing. Nothing is good when it comes to politicians.

        The real problem lies in people like Janama and KinkyKeith wanting politicians to do something. So many people think like that. There’s nothing wrong with doing nothing. Inaction is many times better than action.

        However, unfortunately in the minds of compulsive doers: “Few things are as damnable as inaction. In politics, it is cause for recrimination. In marriage, even the Catholics allow for annulment in case of non-consummation. In finance, it is cause for regrets. In war, it is cause for firing squads. In conversation, an absence of words is embarrassing. When a man stares you in the face and says nothing, you assume he is thinking something dreadful. Unless he smiles; then you think he has lost his mind.”

        And the same goes for zero. “For centuries the number couldn’t even be found. Mathematicians didn’t know what to make of a number that was not a number at all; but an absence of numbers, a graphic display of nothing… a round, empty hole.”

        No. Nothing is good. Zero is even better because it doesn’t exist. That should be the exemplar for politicians.

        http://www.kitco.com/ind/bonner/sep192005.html

        40

        • #
          Robert

          Interesting observations.

          Among the people I know very few if any can enter a room where I happen to be without their mouth turning on. I can’t even sit outside in silence with my thoughts because as soon as one of them sees me they must start talking.

          Perhaps that is a part of the same problem, so many people just have to say something, regardless of whether or not they actually have anything to say, that one cannot help wonder when they find time to think. Constantly talking, on the phone, in the car, wherever. Maybe they think talking is a form of action vs. inaction as you mention. I don’t know.

          But I can say that, even after all the times they have heard this over numerous years, I still get a blank look from people I know when I tell them “If you can’t be quiet go away I have things I need to think about.”

          Since we all know how much politicians love to talk…

          20

        • #
          Joe V.

          You’ve nailed it with that one Sam.

          ” Nothing is good when it comes to politicians.”

          Nailed it from both sides.

          The great thing about such a statement with double meaning is that it can only mean one thing.

          To misquote Ronnie Barker 1929 – 2005

          20

        • #
          inedible hyperbowl

          I think we need politicians in AU to do something. Namely, repeal laws.

          10

        • #
          Roy Hogue

          Sam,

          I would be happy if we could all get our respective politicians to do only those things our respective constitutions specify as their responsibility and go no further than that. Government’s job could be very easy, just keep the playing field level for all players and provide for defense, roads, police and fire protection.

          Of course, they couldn’t feel important that way, could they? So they step in to solve all sorts of problems they have no way to solve. And along the way they find opportunities to line their own pockets and enhance their standing with whoever is a probable helper as they climb the political ladder — all this at your expense and mine.

          I can’t see how we can get along without government, hence there will be politicians. The question is how do we keep them doing only the right job? And before we can answer that we need to answer, what is the right job? And no two agree on the same answer.

          I have only one solution, the people must closely follow what’s going on and throw out anyone not working for the common benefit — a common benefit that no two will agree on; instant catch 22.

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    • #

      To successfully start a new car company is virtually impossible in the modern world. In recent decades the successful ones have been in China, but with the help of, and by copying, established marques. Outside of China, there was Proton of Malaysia. There original car was a 1984 Mitsubishi Lancer. That end of the market you do not want to get into – high subsidies and reliant on cheap labour. The last major car company start-up was (I believe) Honda.
      Then there are niche markets. McLaren is doing well in the UK, but a midget and building on its F1 base. As the majority of F1 cars are made around Silverstone, it had an advantage of a skilled labour pool and (most importantly) the engineering and design skills.
      The alternative is to do what Brazil did. For years it did not allow any imports. There were four foreign car companies building in Brazil (Fiat, Ford, GM and VW). The quality was shocking, models were decades older than Europe and the the companies colluded. VW built a variant of the Ford Escort and the Beetle came off Ford production lines. In 1994, they opened up to imports, but with a 25% import tax. Very quickly 70-80% of the market was imports. So the Brazilians stuck a 70% tax. The response over a decade was for more foreign companies to open assembly plants. Then came Mercosur – the “free-trade” zone covering most of South America. Now there are plants from Renault, Mercedes (mostly the A-class), Audi and Volvo amongst others.
      The problems of taking this route is the restriction of choice. The Mercosur market (including Brazil, Argentina and Mexico) is a number of times bigger than Australia, and last time I looked, had a more limited choice and higher prices than in Europe.
      Learn for Australia what the biggest businesses did in the 1980s. Stick to what you are good at. Let the market develop in Australia based on its comparative advantages. That is farming (which you have developed from low margin sheep farming to high margin wine production) and mining. Then there is tourism as well, so long as you don’t let your government tax air travel.
      In the longer term there are spin-off industries. In Britain we don’t have much manufacturing, but we have some of the world’s best designers. Oil production is declining, but a disproportionate amount of global off-shore technological expertise is around Aberdeen.
      The mistake of most people to associate wealth with making actual things. It is not. Wealth is about creating greater value than the inputs. Assembling everyday, easily reproducible, objects adds very little value, so is confined to the poorest countries. Textiles in Bangladesh, assembly of commodity items in China. The real wealth comes from new ideas, or taking existing processes and doing them more efficiently and/or effectively than anyone else. That is staying ahead of the game.

      A readable primer on the economics is Israel Kirzner’s “Competition and Entrepreneurship.”

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    • #
      Greebo

      Where are the aussie entrepreneurs? Dick Smith? John Singleton? ….

      Clive Palmer… Oh, that’s right, he prefers ships.

      10

    • #

      Manufacturing has been killed; largely by the unions of the people working in the industry. US car assembly workers are paid less than $20/hour. Australian ones almost 3 times that amount; and they get lots of allowances on top.

      Not only are labour rates higher; there’s a strong culture against automation, ironically because it’s alleged to “steal jobs”. Traditionally, those jobs replaced by robotic assembly, etc are shifted into other areas; which just moves people around and ends up increasing the cost of production because the hours “worked” don’t decrease, but costs do because the new machines have to be “fed”. If the people moved around were to work productively, then their effort would increase the value of the product.

      But with labour rates 3 to 4 times higher than the “nearest” competitors, they’d have to work really smart to make up the difference.

      In the perspective of a multinational company, they will quickly deploy their best production methods to all of their production facilities that they feel have long-term viability.

      To give an idea of how automation (as well as product design, materials and out-sourced assembly) have reduced labour hours at car assembly; in the 1960′s VW used to take about 120 hours to assemble a VW Beetle. In the late 1990′s, the labour input on the assembly line had been trimmed to less than 20 hours on a base-model small car.

      In other words; labour productivity went up 6-fold within 30 years. The sensitivity of car manufacturing cost to labour rates is markedly less than what it was in the 1960′s. That should be a labour-market leveller; but not if manufacturing is used as a “make-work” facility.

      The car industry is typical of large-volume manufacturing. Australia used to make lots of goods that it no longer does; TV’s, white-goods, aircraft, etc. Industries grew too comfortable. Were naive when confronted with international competition when industry protection was reduced and were reticent to adapt to consumer demand to make stuff that people wanted, at the right price.

      Component manufacturing in Australia is not just hampered by labour rates, but also variable exchange rates. There is little that governments can do about exchange rates while still having a floating currency. Governments do however permit those not directly involved in producing the wealth by manufacturing, to dictate what employers should be paying employees and under what conditions. Neither has much say other than the employer pulling the plug when they run out of money. Subsidies, typically for production, go to the big manufacturers, with hundreds to thousands of votes; not to the little, productive guy with fewer than 50 votes whose ability to borrow money for new plant is limited by the spreadsheet of his/her banker.

      Alas, without widespread manufacturing, technological innovation in Australia will slow simply because fewer and fewer people see “needs” that can be filled by new products or better processes. Only rural amnd mining sees significant manufacturing innovation in Australia. But quantities, and especially trade volumes, are small.

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    • #
      crakar24

      Been there done that Janama, why do you think they have gone broke. Not enough people buy new cars and they cost heaps to make.

      32

      • #
        janama

        According to the chief executive of the motor industry consultancy Automotive Intelligence, Richard Johns, fleets accounted for two-thirds of the sales of both the Ford Falcon and the Holden Commodore in the first four months of this year. Police cars, government departments, universities – that’s 66% of all car sales. The public only account for 33%.

        30

        • #
          crakar24

          My point exactly

          21

          • #
            janama

            No – your point was: “Not enough people buy new cars and they cost heaps to make.”

            Fleet sales offset the cost of cars in this country and a new company that has rid itself of the ridiculous wage and perks demanded by the unions could well get itself off the ground, initially supported by fleet sales.

            00

            • #
              crakar24

              Yes thats my point as you say 66% of cars sold are to fleet sales we dont sell enough expensive to make cars here

              00

    • #
      Ace

      your domestic market is microscopic and all your other markets are immensely distant. bmw can ship to you because they have a 500 million head local market base. the reverse wont be true.

      i remember in the seventies looking at japanese autos lined up glinting in sunlight on the wharves accross from my sisters balcony in balmain. cost effective to ship to you on the basis of 100 million japanese head market base. i dont think you would have found many gm holden in tokyo though.

      maybe im wrong. maybe the jakuza all drove sin-bins and my economics is crap. i certainly aint got business acumen.

      00

  • #
    Joe V.

    The car industry exemplifies the economies of scale. What entrepreneur would choose to manufacture where the labour & energy costs are inflated & growing wrt. the rest of the world.
    The Carbon Tax has been the death knell of steel, aluminium & car production in Australia ( I can only say that as I’m already ‘off-shore’), yet it hadn’t raised any money. Woeful, simply woeful..

    51

    • #
      • #
        Eddie Sharpe

        Is that an ALP Member ? Well Neil Kinnock made a right Pratt of himself when Labour were set to win the 1992 election following the downfall of Thatcher. It was April 1st. The Conservatives went on to win an incredible 4th term, eight days later.

        40

        • #
          Themm Nunnov

          Is that an ALP Member ?

          Unfortunately, Eddie, it’s worse than that. He’s unofficially “The Minister for Almost Everything” in the current Labor government.

          Officially he is the Minister for Trade and Competitiveness, the Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills, Science and Research, and the Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Asian Century Policy.

          Scary.

          Oh, and he’s also an ex-husband and an ex-father, as a result of being an ex-lover of our current PM (yeah, another one).

          71

          • #
            Winston

            And when he is an Ex-Member of parliament in September, he will need ample supplies of “Four-Ex” to cope with the humiliation of the litany of failure he has been instrumental in implementing. He has an absolute genius for it.

            Perhaps a career as a recording artist beckons? He couldn’t be any worse at it, could he?

            40

      • #

        how many carbon atoms were released with that link?

        A shirtload more than necessary because of redirection via goggle instead of the direct one.

        00

        • #
          Roy Hogue

          A shirtload more than necessary because of redirection via goggle [Google?] instead of the direct one.

          One of the benefits of using the Google Chrome browser is that it keeps those redirection links out of your browsing history. Chrome is what governments should be — lean, clean, fast and trouble free. The more I use it the more I like it.

          It’s free too — one of the few free things I know of that is actually worth more than you pay for it.

          10

  • #
    MadJak

    So the time has come to focus on something just as important: that 90 per cent of the measures adopted in Britain and elsewhere since the 1997 Kyoto agreement to cut global emissions are a waste of time and money – including windfarms in Scotland, carbon taxes and Byzantine carbon trading systems

    Professor Myles Allen from the UK in the daily mail:

    Why I think we’re wasting billions on global warming

    40

  • #
    The Black Adder

    The King Island Wind Farm debate is hotting up!

    The ABC is trying hard to influence the outcome, but at least the Anti-wind proponents get a good hearing.

    http://mpegmedia.abc.net.au/rn/podcast/2013/05/bbg_20130526_0805.mp3

    They did however fail to mention ….

    - how inconsistent the power output is.
    - how ineffecient the power output is.
    - how many birds and wildlife are killed.
    - the amount of CO2 used to produce these monsters.
    - the loss of the visual environment.

    Many unanswered questions still remain….

    30

  • #

    We keep hearing how Wind Power is cheap. Surely there’s a way that could be proved then, or perhaps disproved maybe.

    South Australia has the greatest amount of Installed Wind plants in Australia, so maybe electricity costs for that State could act as an indicator, you know to show us how cheap Wind Power really is, or, umm, not.

    Take a look at the following link for power costs, and note the costs for South Australia, right down the page, but especially over the last week or two.

    AEMO Average Price Tables

    This is from the Australian Regulator, AEMO and for the current Month, May. Note the costs for South Australia. Note the text above this chart where it says Peak RRP. This is the cost for power during the hours 7AM until 10PM, you know, when people are actually not sleeping, at home, at work, out in the Community. That is what they refer to as Peak Power.

    Look now specifically at the costs for Friday, 17May2013.

    South Australia paid between 9 and 10 times more for its power than every other State for its power.

    Why is that?

    South Australia prides itself on its large amount of Wind Power, and no doubt you’ve all heard the spin that Wind Power is becoming cheaper than traditional forms or power generation, in the main, large scale coal fired power.

    I’ve done some analysis that explodes that myth of cheap wind power, well not me exploding it, as I’m just explaining what it means, because the data itself explodes the myth.

    While electrical power for most of Australia cost around $50 per MWH on that day, S.A was paying a whopping $461 per MWH for their power for virtually the whole of the day. That cost equates to 46 cents per KWH, the wholesale price that retailers can only sell at around 30 cents per KWH retail to all consumers, the costliest power in Australia.

    So then, can this huge cost be attributed to Wind Power?

    You bet it can. You see, while SA consumed on average 1610MW of power during that time period, Wind Power supplied only 32MW of that power, meaning that of the 560 huge wind towers at 15 Wind Plants in that State, barely 16 of those towers actually had their blades turning and generating power for those 16 hours, and for 2 hours virtually all of them were actually stopped. So then, hang on you say, if wind is not supplying any power then how can the claim be made that this was the cause of the huge cost for electricity?

    It’s quite simple really. Because Wind is not supplying power, desperate grid controllers had to ask virtually every other plant in the State to run for the whole day, plants specifically designed to only run for a few hours or so when needed. Even Victoria chipped in, supplying the full 100MW of power that S.A. requires from that State on most days, all that Victorian power coming from brown coal fired plants.

    That cost can be directly attributed to wind power as a cost, because it is a cost that is caused by wind power, namely, the lack of it. Power has to be sourced from somewhere as a backup, and as is plain to see, that power is not cheap.

    This conclusively shows that wind power has a dirty little secret that supporters won’t tell you about, and this shows once and for all that wind power is most definitely not cheap.

    I have written an analysis on just this at my home site, and this explains it in more detail.

    Is South Australia’s Wind Power Cheap? Well, No

    Tony.

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  • #
    The Black Adder

    By the way the Qld Govt. has flagged this morning another 20% increase in our power prices this year!!

    WTF!!!

    Wind and Solar Subsidies are killing us!

    As a family man with 3 kids and a mortgage….

    How the hell can I pay my power bill!

    Grrrrrrr…….

    70

    • #
      Manfred

      You have my sympathy TBA!

      I have asked this before and for the moment am uncertain whether my question was answered, to wit:

      As demand for electricity wanes (mainly through cost) and people seek private means of generation or more likely, simply learn to do without, what happens to the major providers of electricity? If as they say in Glasgow that 30% of the people will be unable to afford power within 2 years, doesn’t the supply/demand equation collapse?

      On the face of it, it does seem consistent with the unspoken toxic Greenist agenda, namely their principle goal to strangle economic activity by progressive impoverishment.

      60

      • #
        Manfred

        I see Pat has part contributed an answer to my question in the post #9 below:

        A national meeting of electricity executives in Sydney this week discussed a potential “death spiral” for the industry as high electricity prices force more people off the grid, increasing costs further for those who remained…

        Surely the collective wisdom in the industry has considered this perspective before now? Surely? If they wind up labelling it as an ‘unintended outcome’, the oft used excuse for poorly considered policies and are developed around a uni-dimensional aim fixation, they’ll have betrayed that they’re all taking the IQ lowering pill,
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kVa_bSCVjlU.

        30

        • #
          Manfred

          damn! must get these specs fixed! correction:

          …poorly considered policies THAT are developed around uni-dimensional aim fixation…

          10

          • #
            MemoryVault

            .
            Actually Blackadder, something very much along those lines happened with water in Victoria, prior to the floods.

            To preserve supplies, they imposed restrictions and bumped up the price. People responded by using less water, to the point where they had to increase the price again to make up for the loss of revenue.

            Won’t be quite the same with electricity. As TonyfromOz has pointed out, there simply won’t BE any, regardless of price.

            40

      • #

        Manfred,

        around the time you mention here, politicians of all ilk will realise, at long last, and perhaps even too late that to allow the grid to crash would be absolutely catastrophic. Then, there will be the swift plans to construct new power plants that actually can supply power that can actually be relied upon to keep the Country running.

        The problem is not Residential power, as , and this has been done before in times of power rationing, the first to be shed from grids are large residential areas, in rolling sequence.

        Everything will be done to keep power supplied to Industry and Commerce, because without that there will be absolute anarchy.

        Now it takes time to construct power plants. The quickest from turning sod to power delivery is open cycle gas turbines, around 15 to 18 Months.

        Then coal fired plants, and here I’m not talking piddlingly little things but large scale plants of 2000MW+, around three years to construct.

        In the interim, existing plants, now all of them aging and requiring more maintenance, will be (virtually) driven into the ground just to keep power supplied to the sectors most in need.

        Closing down industry and commerce will be disaster on a grand scale, workplaces unable to function, shops closed, food in supermarkets spoiling, train systems down, hospitals running on bare minimum, transport chaos, and on and on.

        Note the 2 types of plant that will need to be constructed, both large emitters of CO2. That emissions problem will be the least of Government’s worry if those power plants begin to fail, having gone unreplaced for so long.

        People will look at wind and say, as Dorrie Evans once famously said, why wasn’t I told.

        At the moment, old plants are just managing, and some are actually counting their beans, getting to the stage where it is uneconomical to keep running.

        When large scale plants begin closing, then the bovine waste product will come into violent contact with the rotating wind generating device.

        At that one point in time, it will already be too late.

        People won’t be saying ….. hey what about the CO2 emissions?

        They’ll be saying ….. hey, where’s my power?

        You say I’m fear mongering.

        It’ll only take one plant to go down, and all hell will break loose.

        It’s happening now in South Australia, as I showed in the comment at #5. They closed down Playford, and Northern is next, nothing to do with CO2 emissions, but that they had reached their retirement ages both around 50 years. Now both those plants will be unavailable, just look at what Sth Australia is paying for their power.

        Coming soon to a State near you.

        And hey, can you imagine the absolute screaming from those people with rooftop panels when the power gets cut to their area. You see, their power also goes down as well.

        Tony.

        90

        • #
          MemoryVault

          .
          To make it even worse there’s two things you haven’t considered, Tony.

          First, it doesn’t matter how quickly you can build a gas power station, there’s no gas available to power it. Here’s an article on it on the ABC right now.

          Second, regardless of how quickly we might be able to build a steam power station, you will still need to buy a turbine. I have an associate at Siemens who tells me the lead time on a turbine for anything over 500MW is now around five to six years.

          80

          • #

            MemoryVault says here:

            Second, regardless of how quickly we might be able to build a steam power station, you will still need to buy a turbine. I have an associate at Siemens who tells me the lead time on a turbine for anything over 500MW is now around five to six years.

            Some of you may wonder at the huge lead time for a turbine for a large scale coal fired plant.

            The image at this link shows an image of a man working on just one section of one stage of w three stage turbine to actually drive a large scale generator.

            This is a Siemens turbine.

            It’ll get to the stage where we might even have to go to China for assistance in building a new plant, and they have it down to a fine art now. The possible problem with that is the Chinese are flat out building their own plants.

            Tony.

            60

            • #
              The Black Adder

              Well Tony….

              We have a perfectly good Manufacturing Factory in Geelong that will be idle soon!

              Can that make a Turbine to drive a generator??

              30

              • #
                MemoryVault

                .
                In short, no.

                If you go back to the picture Tony linked to, you see a portion of the polished steel shaft. On a really big turbine these can be over twenty feet long, and 18 inches in diameter. They are cast from special steel that we can’t make, into special molds that control the cooling process over several weeks. We don’t have them, and we don’t have the technology to make them.

                The blank shaft is then turned in a specialist lathe-style machine. I doubt there is anything remotely that size anywhere in the southern hemisphere, let alone Oz.

                50

              • #
                crakar24

                Yes MV that is correct we do not have the equipment to do such a thing however there is/will not be there after 2016 a casting plant in Geelong.

                We have the expertise to operate the lathes etc

                We have the engineering expertise etc

                So we have the technology to do such a thing “in Geelong” however it wont happen………….we could build wind turbines i suppose but i doubt we could compete with the Chinese unless we had government hand outs

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            • #
              MemoryVault

              .
              China got around the lead-time problem by inviting GE (the other big turbine manufacturer) to set up shop in China. They financed construction of the plant, and GE man it with engineers and specialists from their German operations.

              That plant now exclusively supplies China and Germany, which is why China can open a coal powered station every other week, and Germany has six almost ready to go, with another 32 now on the drawing boards.

              No help from China, I’m afraid.

              No, we’re stuffed. Next summer will see rolling brown-outs and black-outs all up and down the East coast every time it gets a bit warm and people switch on their air-conditioners, and by the summer after that we will have restrictions on their use, much like we have watering restrictions in times of drought.

              Something along the lines of odd number houses can have their air-conditioners on in odd hours, and people in even number houses can switch them on in even hours. People will be encouraged to “dob in a neighbour” known to be abusing the system.

              I’m not saying that for dramatic effect. Something along those lines will be necessary to maintain some sort of stability in the overall supply. Even more perversely, the same need for grid stability will mean isolating the highly variable windmills from the grid altogether.

              It will be interesting to hear the politicians explain THAT!!

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              • #

                Where MemoryVault says this:

                No, we’re stuffed. Next summer will see rolling brown-outs and black-outs all up and down the East coast every time it gets a bit warm and people switch on their air-conditioners, and by the summer after that we will have restrictions on their use, much like we have watering restrictions in times of drought.

                Actually, this highlights something that has become almost urban legend.

                It has very little if anything to do with residential air conditioning.

                I want you to look at every building taller than 2 levels, and then just hazard a guess as to how many there are, and then look at the skyline of any city, small up to large at the really tall and large buildings, and than add on all the Malls etc, and all the Coles and Woolies with their huge banks of freezers and cold storage, but mainly each and every one of those tall buildings.

                Each one has an air conditioning unit on the roof, but calling it that gives rise to an erroneous understanding. They are all set at the one temperature all year round, hence seeming warm in Winter and cool in Summer.

                Their primary task is to circulate conditioned breathing air throughout that building, and try wandering up to a window on the 20th floor and opening it. The only way air gets circulated throughout those buildings is via those huge units on the roof.

                Those buildings get hot inside especially during Summer, with all that glass. Hence, to keep the temperature at that set number, the compressors in those units are working overtime, hence huge Summer consumption from 10AM till 5PM.

                The Summer load curve shows this, and the Winter load curve confirms it. Summer shows a steady rise in the AM a flat peak and then a gradual fall.

                In Winter there is the lower morning residential peak, then a slight dip, then the afternoon evening rise again.

                On Freezing cold days then ….. if it was residential consumption then the load curves would look similar to Summer as people use their aircons as heaters or just heaters, but what happens is that dip remains there, and just the two residential peaks rise a small amount.

                In Winter, all that glass on all those high rises warms up the inside of the building, and the only thing running is the recirculation fans on all those rooftop units, and the high electricity consumption compressors would rarely cut in at all, just after hours after sunset as the insides cools down.

                In Summer however, those compressors are all running virtually flat out, all the time to try and keep the temperature at that one set temperature, hence the distinct difference in the shape of the load curves, Summer and Winter.

                On days when we are told that there is that foul disgusting term Peak Power, perhaps 40 hours a year, that is due nearly wholly on every high rise in the Country.

                Shutting down, (rationing or load shedding) residential consumption will make almost zero change to those load curves for actual consumption.

                Shut down those tall buildings. Malls, Coles and Woolies with their humungous banks of freezers and cold storage, and wait for the anarchy to start. Those tall buildings will be uninhabitable. You can’t just turn them off, and anyway, it’s mandated that they be left running all the time.

                It’s got nothing to do with residential aircon use at all. That is but the smallest of small blips in all this, run by entities with an agenda to push, and until people understand how power is consumed in the Country, the poor old residential consumer will ALWAYS be the one who suffers the most.

                Tony.

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              • #
                Andrew McRae

                I can imagine GE China saying “A lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on ours.”

                Totally snookered. Six years of power rationing. A new Dark Ages literally.

                In economic matters such as this, it’s not inevitable, it’s just a question of how much money and willpower can be brought to bear on the issue. The manufacturer could be bribed or offered 3 times the sticker price to send the 3rd turbine off the line to us instead of Germany. The picture you paint of the government being historically uncaring, bordering on intentional self-harm, is hardly reassuring for the present predicament.

                You are right to raise awareness of the issue. In the best case it will build enough political will to raid the State budgets and redirect spending from pointless activity to restoring reliable electricity. In the worst case it will at least help people remember WHY it all broke and WHO did this. History has become our black box flight recorder – the disaster is going to happen, but the real tragedy is to not learn from it.

                Now if the States saved the people’s power that would be mud in the eye of the Canberra control freaks.

                20

              • #
                ianl8888

                From TonyOz


                Malls, Coles and Woolies with their humungous banks of freezers and cold storage, and wait for the anarchy to start

                Added to this loss of access to frozen food is the fact that the ATM’s, credit computers etc won’t work, so if there is any food available, you can’t buy it anyway. Cities cannot feed or energise themselves but most people do not understand this simple fact (or it scares them too much to think about)

                Overseas investors to date cancelling $150bn of projects, manufacturing in a heap, grid energy on the brink. The Greens deliberate policy aims are coming to fruition. These are not “unintended consequences” but deliberately sought ones, predicted 20 years ago when the 1st steps were seen

                Aus deserves this for the stupid way it votes. I’ve tried to prepare my now grown children by encouraging them to aquire educational skills and hard-on experience sufficient to allow them to find useful jobs overseas (maybe worked)

                See this link for Ian Fells (UK) on this issue:

                https://sites.google.com/site/mytranscriptbox/home/20130524_pm

                20

              • #
                Yonniestone

                Hey guys I know from personal experience that power supply has been rationed in outer suburbs, especially new developments, for years now.
                How? because when you go to use a power saw the blade turns slowly or drills etc, the result is you can’t use your power tools or they will burn out trying to draw power to operate, I learnt this the hard way until a sparky explained this.
                The same loss of power can be seen with welding machines at certain times of the day as the operating amps you set earlier will not be as high later, so its best to do a test run if you want the same penetration especially for inspected welds.

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        • #
          Manfred

          Tony & MV thank you kindly for your replies and discourse on the subject. I did not know that the lead in time for tubine manufacture was so long, but I am unsurprised. This will be a captivating experience for the generation with the attention span of a sound bite or video clip!

          The problem is not Residential power, as , and this has been done before in times of power rationing, the first to be shed from grids are large residential areas, in rolling sequence.

          So, while industry and commerce limp on, the greater mass of voters in toxic Green utopia will be rationed. It’ll be fun and games watching politicians scramble to maintain any semblance of believable political traction.

          The incentive to go off grid grows greater daily. Now, were someone to produce an innovative, inexpensive battery/capacitor technology that enabled residential self reliance to flourish within the reach of most…

          20

      • #
        Roy Hogue

        … doesn’t the supply/demand equation collapse?

        Doesn’t the society collapse?

        00

  • #
    handjive

    * “Mark the 27th May 2013 in your calender, ladies and gentlemen.

    Because today is the day when climate change officially changed from being a science to being a religion.

    A science potentially is open to challenge by new data, a religious belief is impervious to any evidence.

    Through a sleight of hand Professor Karoly and colleagues and dramatically shifted the goal posts by saying they expect absolutely no warming – none whatsoever – until 2030.
    After which temperatures will – for mysterious reasons – suddenly increase by 3 degrees over 50 years.”
    .
    * Comment from Sean Lamb @ theconversation for latest settled science from UN-IPCC scientist, David Karoly, author of failed Gergis/Karoly et al paper.

    Did we mention “settled science?”

    Quote Karoly:
    “But the models did not consider uncertainty from interactions with the carbon cycle – the way carbon is absorbed and released by oceans, plant life and soil.”
    .
    Maybe they confused the element carbon (c) with the compound carbon dioxide (co2).

    That deception & confusion could happen when you practice fraudulent junk science where half a dozen completely differently identified gasses are unscientifically lumped together under one name with one objective: to deceive.
    .
    The dirty thieving rats are building back door escape routes as their climate fraud falls apart around them.

    The internet never forgets, Karoly. [snip - J] You can run, but you can’t hide.
    And you can pass that free information on to your fraudulent cohorts like Steffen, Flannery & the rest of the Climate commission, Pitman, English, Jones, Brannaga, Trewin, Chubb et al.

    And that’s not a threat. It’s a promise.

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    • #

      Just to pick you up on one thing. They meant carbon not carbon dioxide. Yes, the element. It is a carbon cycle and carbon is absorbed and released, but what was missing from the statement was “stored”. ie absorbed, stored, released. True, it exists atmospherically mostly as CO2 but not when in the oceans or in the plants, animals etc. The carbon atom can spend a lot of time in molecules other than CO2 in the cycle.

      40

      • #
        crakar24

        GA,

        I sent an email to your G mail account but have no response? I guess you are just a tease after all :-)

        22

      • #
        handjive

        Fair enough, GA.
        As soon as I hit the send button, I realised they indeed did mean carbon, and the carbon cycle.
        Your response it dead right. I stand corrected.

        But, with indulgence and in so many words, what I meant, and badly explained.
        .
        These fraudulent climate scientists were too smart by half.

        The Karoly quote, “But the models did not consider uncertainty from interactions with the carbon cycle – the way carbon is absorbed and released by oceans, plant life and soil.”

        Firstly, what is carbon?
        All living things are made of carbon. Carbon is also a part of the ocean, air, and even rocks.
        At surface temperatures and pressures, Graphite is the stable form of carbon.
        Graphite is a polymorph of the element carbon. Diamond is another polymorph.
        The two share the same chemistry, carbon, but have very different structures and very different properties.

        Now, the word “carbon”, as used exclusively by Warming Alarmist Climate Scientists like Karoly is claimed to ‘represent greenhouse gasses’.

        A check of greenhouse gasses per IPCC documentation shows many, many gases that ARE NOT part of the carbon cycle, and are usually grouped under the title “other gases.
        These are in minute (parts per million) amounts in the atmosphere.

        Also, looking at this first graph, carbon is not nitrogen. Nor is it Argon. Or water vapour ( the MOST important GHG )
        If it was, 99.96% of the pie chart would be one colour.
        After all, “carbon” represents up to 22 other gases per IPCC documentation.

        So, by Karoly’s own admission, not only did he leave out ‘the carbon cycle’, he also left ALL the greenhouse gases out of his models.

        Did they confuse the element #6 carbon, with the compound carbon dioxide?

        Maybe they left the atmosphere out of the models, confusing it with carbon and/or GHG’s?

        Referring to carbon dioxide as “carbon” is as foolish as calling water “hydrogen” or salt “chlorine.”

        This is gross incompetence or deceit worthy of dismissal. Add advocation for a carbon (sic) tax, and we have fraud. Scientific & economic fraud.

        Another fraudulent global warming chicken has come home to roost.

        Carbon is not carbon dioxide.

        20

        • #
          Robert

          I’ve been hammering on this one for awhile now, nice to see someone else is as irritated by it as I am.

          Carbon == an element, which is in just about everything that matters to us including us.

          Carbon Dioxide == a compound, it is a distinct compound generally found in a gaseous state.

          Two different things as you so aptly noted. But to talk about CO2 in the proper terminology does not foster the sooty, black imagery that the word carbon by itself does. I highly suspect that imagery is what they are after so they play loose with their terminology just like they do with their science.

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          • #
            crakar24

            Carbon == Diamonds no not the kind you find in the ground….well yes them but more importantly the other kind you know man made made ones used in industry all made from carbon pollution and not a cent raised from the carbon tax.

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        • #
          Gee Aye

          Anyone concerned about my well-being, I managed to step aside before the rant train ran through.

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    Greebo

    Chris “Topher” Field is working on a new project. Anyone got some spare cash?

    http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/50-to-1-project-the-true-cost-of-action-on-climate-change

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    pat

    Chill breeze of politics stills Australian renewables
    BUNGENDORE, May 27 (Reuters) – On a line of low hills standing sentinel beside a dry lake bed near Australia’s capital, giant turbines turning slowly in a chill winter breeze give no hint of a multi-billion-dollar storm building around renewable energy…
    http://www.pointcarbon.com/news/reutersnews/1.2388745?&ref=searchlist

    25 May: Australian: Graham Lloyd: Solar price rise to end power divide
    AUSTRALIA’S one million rooftop solar households could be forced to pay new fixed charges to help recover billions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies and make electricity prices fairer for all consumers.
    A series of electricity industry reports has highlighted the inequity in existing power pricing where customers without solar panels are unfairly subsidising those with them…
    Queensland Energy Minister Mark McArdle has warned that existing rooftop solar contracts will cost the state more than $2.8 billion over the next 15 years and is preparing a major submission to cabinet within a month recommending more user-pays charges. Electricity tariffs could be changed to include a higher network access charge and lower unit prices per kilowatt hour, a move that would increase the cost for rooftop solar users.
    A national meeting of electricity executives in Sydney this week discussed a potential “death spiral” for the industry as high electricity prices force more people off the grid, increasing costs further for those who remained…
    McCardle: “When those doing the paying are likely those least able to afford it, and those enjoying the benefits are those likely to be most able to afford to meet their true costs, then something is truly wrong.”
    The problem was compounded because power companies were forced to buy high-priced electricity from rooftop solar when there was no demand for electricity from customers…
    And baseload power generators were forced to run inefficiently to be ready for when “intermittent” solar power was not available.
    Renewable industry lobby groups have rejected calls for a new fixed charge…
    Like Queensland, all state governments have cut back their generous feed-in tariff schemes, but are likely to seriously consider the ESAA reports to move towards a fixed network access charge. Solar has posed significant problems for electricity companies in Western Australia and NSW.
    The discussion paper said a new way was needed to charge consumers for the cost of the networks to make sure everybody paid their fair share…
    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/solar-price-rise-to-end-power-divide/story-fn59niix-1226650277855

    26 May: NYT: ISABEL KERSHNER: Israeli Venture Meant to Serve Electric Cars Ends Its Run
    The company’s founder predicted that 100,000 electric cars would be on the roads here by 2010.
    But on Sunday, Better Place announced that its venture, a flagship enterprise of Israel’s image as a start-up hub, was coming to an end.
    Dan Cohen, the company’s third chief executive, said in a statement that financial difficulties had left the company no option but to file for liquidation in a district court and to request the appointment of a provisional receiver “to find the best way to minimize the damage to its employees, customers and creditors.” …
    The announcement followed a string of setbacks in the emerging electric car market. Fisker, a carmaker, is in financial distress; A123 Systems, a battery supplier for Fisker, and, more recently, Coda Holdings, another carmaker, filed for bankruptcy…
    President Obama, during his March visit here, praised the Israelis’ innovative spirit, mentioning electric cars as one of several examples.
    Yet the project was hobbled by problems and delays, and the company’s idea failed to gain traction, with fewer than 1,000 cars on the road in Israel and another few hundred in Denmark…
    About $850 million in private capital has been invested in the company, which has 350 employees in Israel…
    Under terms that resembled a cellphone plan, subscribers to Better Place bought their cars and paid about $350 a month to lease access to the batteries, swap stations and charge points. But only one car manufacturer, the French automaker Renault, signed on to adapt its Fluence Z.E. sedan to enable battery switching, limiting the customers’ choices and the company’s potential…
    About three dozen switching stations now dot Israel, which is about 260 miles long from north to south, but they often look deserted…
    ***In February, Better Place announced that it was winding down its operations in North America and Australia to concentrate on its core markets in Denmark and Israel.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/27/business/global/israeli-electric-car-company-files-for-liquidation.html?_r=0

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  • #
    MemoryVault

    .
    Much has been said in this thread about the lack of vision of our politicians and the lack of political will to do anything meaningful to develop Australia.

    Back in the late Sixties and Seventies there was a group of influential Australians, led by Joh Bjelke Petersen and Lang Hancock, who had a vision.

    That vision involved developing the Pilbara iron ore mines, developing the North Queensland coal fields, and linking the two with a dual railway line from the West coast up near Exmouth, across to Townsville in the east.

    Large, state-of-the-art, German technology, high grade steel mills would be built in the Pilbara. Coal would be railed across from QLD to the Pilbara, high grade steel would be railed back for export to the rest of the world, and to supply a refurbished steel industry at Newcastle.

    Several Ord River type irrigation projects would be constructed at suitable locations right across the North of Australia. Spur lines from the main East-West rail line would be pushed through to service these irrigation projects, and the towns that would develop around them.

    Several mega-power stations, coal or nuclear, would be built at strategic locations along the main rail line to supply electricity to the region, and much of the millions of acres of land now available would be opened for settlement under the old “selection” process (fence it, develop it, pay rates on it for seven years, and it’s yours – just don’t ask for a government bail-out).

    Skilled migration, both from abroad and the South, would be actively encouraged.

    These men of vision didn’t want money, only official permission to proceed. They had access to all the funds they needed, and then some. Japanese industry, hungry for more high grade steel but running out of suitable locations for steel mills in densely populated Japan, were only too keen to invest.

    For over a decade Federal governments of BOTH persuasions, on the “advice” of the Canberra bureaucratic mandarins they were supposed to be managing, vetoed the whole thing, until, eventually, those men of vision lost patience and directed their efforts and their vision elsewhere.

    —————————————-

    If those men of vision had been allowed to proceed, even in part, nearly half a century ago, we would not be having many of the conversations we are having today. Instead of bemoaning the closure of our car makers, Australia would be a booming and expanding nation with a population of 50 million or more, and we would have a thriving automobile industry, based on our own domestic market.

    We would be a major producer and exporter of high grade steel into the expanding markets of China, South Korea, Taiwan and India, instead of merely being a quarry for those countries. We would still be building ships in Newcastle. Heck, we could even be building our own Destroyers, instead having to get Spain to build them for us.

    We would be the fresh food basket of Asia, exporting everything from bamboo shoots to mangoes into what, in most cases, would be the “off” season for this produce in their target markets. Instead of just wheat, we would be a major supplier of rice into an ever expanding Asian market.

    Instead of lamenting what to do about “Boat People”, we would be actively encouraging family migration to “take up a selection” in what could have been the largest migration since the “Wild West” was opened up in the United States.

    Instead of all the lamenting and hand-wringing over our “Disadvantaged Indigenous People”, we would have towns, schools and hospitals, plus endless opportunity, available for all those who wanted it, right across the North of Australia.

    ————————————

    So, in place of all that, what did we get instead?

    Whitlam – an end to National Service, and the foundation of the Welfare State.

    Fraser – Retrospective legislation.

    Hawke – Compulsory superannuation designed to cheat workers out of a pay rise and enrich the finance industry.

    Keating – The “Recession We Had to Have”.

    Howard – The GST and general disarmament of the civilian population.

    KRudd/Gillard – Pink batts, debt, school halls, more debt, a white elephant NBN, even more debt, a carbon tax, yet more debt, billions wasted on “renewable energy”, some extra debt, the destruction of our manufacturing industry, still more debt, the buggering of our mining investment boom, plus more debt, plus a debate on Gay Marriage. Did I mention debt?

    .
    And what are we being promised under an Abbott led government?

    Well, even Abbott’s staunchest supporter, Andrew Bolt, has started to call it “Labor-Lite”.

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      Ah, MemoryVault, how good it is to see you back here.

      Vision died with those men.

      The only vision they have now is the next election, and further distilled down, the next opinion poll!

      While in the RAAF and stationed at Williamtown in the early 70′s, I remember the rolling power rationing in NSW as those new large scale power plants went in as population increases meant increased power demand and those old plants couldn’t cope.

      We’re almost at that stage again, and there’s no one out there to see that problem, and the people have all forgotten what it was like, most unknowing because it was before their time.

      Only now, there’s no politician game enough to do something about it.

      Bayswater have had plans to upgrade to new tech USC coal fired plant on their existing site, plans that have been out there for around four years or more now. Now,it will reach the stage where it may finally get approval due to the drastic situation we now find ourselves in. Only now, the cost will be so exorbitant, probably three times what it would have originally cost, and probably too much to do it now.

      Tony.

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      • #
        Rereke Whakaaro

        I will second that, MV. You have been sorely missed.

        10

        • #
          crakar24

          Maybe he got locked in the vault by accident and has been traped all this time? No matter i look forward to your witty ripostes once again MV.

          10

    • #
      DavidH

      I recall Joh also promoted building a spaceport on Cape York.

      10

    • #
    • #
      Greebo

      All that would have eclipsed the Snowy Scheme as a nation building exercise. Today’s mob point to the bloody NBN and make comparisons with the Snowy, and vilify Gina Rheinhart and Twiggy Forrest.. Ye Gods.

      30

    • #
      Andrew McRae

      And a warm welcome to MemoryVault’s return, whose bad news is always so bad it’s restorative. :)

      Regarding the car industry, I’m torn between my quasi-religious adherence to the Austrian school versus stoking manufacturing in this country. On the one hand, Government intervention to subsidise manufacturing is just stealing from the 75% who can’t afford the cars that will be built and giving it to the 25% who can. On the other hand, the skill and infrastructure that can be built up around cars can eventually spin out into making other devices where there is more room for innovation, and somewhat ideologically (in spite of ManicBeanCounter’s advice in 1.3) skilled craftspeople shouldn’t have to move out of Australia to do the job they love.

      A battle of ideologies there. It’s a choice between favouring the end user versus the jobs in between. The pragmatic answer is probably to import all our cars from overseas and let the local industry find ways of fending for itself. If it dies, that’s just the free market at work. The profit-seeking market economy lowers costs and generates consumer choice. You have to look to communism if you want to guarantee local supply and local jobs. Cars could be built competitively in this country ina free market system without any subsidies if steel refinery and car workers take a massive pay cut and live like paupers – to offset our high electricity prices and long distance transport costs. Don’t say it can’t be done, but if the workers get shafted in the process then what is this really being done for if not out of someone’s sheer ideology?
      The only way is to find production methods that are as cheap as labour in China. Good luck with that. Even robots and CNC mills are surely not as cheap as the self-maintaining variety.

      A parallel claim could be made about the defence sector in this country, but that involves a whole bunch of other historical geopolitical baggage and there are some obvious reasons why the defence sector is both subsidised by government in services (to maintain a local support base) and is also throttled down with an iron fist (to prevent any actual local war machine production ability). eg the Aussie Fighter, ah what short-lived technocratic dream that was.

      While we’re talking hypothetical alternative histories… If that glorious manufacturing vision of Hancock/Bjelke Petersen/etc had actually occurred in the 1960s it would still have been shut down and offshored to China during the industrialisation of China in the 1990s, just as it has been in the USA and Europe.

      so… If you can’t fight economics, roll with it?

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      • #
        MemoryVault

        Hello Andrew,

        While we’re talking hypothetical alternative histories… If that glorious manufacturing vision of Hancock/Bjelke Petersen/etc had actually occurred in the 1960s it would still have been shut down and offshored to China during the industrialisation of China in the 1990s, just as it has been in the USA and Europe.

        Actually, no.

        I have a brother-in-law who works as a consultant to various Chinese industry organisations (he speaks fluent Mandarin), and they are very keen to see something like that vision developed, with them taking Japan’s place. For the Chinese it’s as much about food security as it is about steel.

        People seem to miss the point that there are now over 100 million Chinese who now qualify as “upper middle class” by western standards. That’s as big a “high disposable income” market as Europe, the USA, Canada, and Oz combined.

        20

        • #
          Andrew McRae

          Okay, fair enough, but I was talking about the “manufacturing vision” of the 1960s for which China had no comparable industry and no affluent consumer segment at that time, not the “Asia’s Food Basket” plan of today.

          Speaking of basket cases I heard Bob Katter proposed the “Asia’s Food Basket” plan for the tropical north just a few years ago. I guess even a stopped clock is right twice a day?

          We had the “dig it up and sell it to the Japanese” economy in the 1980s. Looks like the best hope for the future is to simply change the customer delivery address. Maybe we can barter two of their new power plants for equity in this new Northern Development Scheme?
          Seems the Brisbane Line plan is alive and well, but the occupying force sent us money instead of bombs.

          20

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        MemoryVault

        .
        As for the car industry, in the 1940′s both Ford and GM were encouraged by the grubmint of the day to locally manufacture an “Australian” car. Ultimately both companies got financial incentives, development incentives, and a thirteen year tax break (yes, no income tax for 13 years). A massive levy was imposed on imported cars to protect their home market.

        In return, they were supposed to develop an “Australian Vehicle Industry”, incorporating innovative technological development, develop an export market into Asia, and invest and assist in the development of the heavy steel manufacturing industry based at Newcastle.

        This was long before the first Toyota Corona or Honda Scamp arrived here in Oz.

        What Australians actually got in return was the “sheltered workshop” mentality that persists to this day. No attempt was ever made to explore or develop an export market – it is doubtful any GM or Ford executive ever made it as far as Newcastle, let alone SE Asia.

        As for “technological innovation”, the last Kingswood off the production at the end of the Seventies still came standard with a truck rear axle on leaf springs (independent suspension was an “optional extra”) and was powered by a motor which was only a much revamped version of the Holden “Grey” side-valve engine in the first FX model in 1948-9.

        By way of comparison, by the end of the Seventies Australians could buy Japanese cars with fully independent suspension, disk brakes, front wheel drive by an overhead cam V6 engine, with a radio cassette player thrown in as standard for good measure, for the same price as a GM or Ford rust bucket with ill-fitting doors. And that included the import duty.

        Ford and GM have been walking corpses ever since, propped up by government subsidies.

        I own a 1995 Eunos 800. It was Mazda’s attempt to compete with Lexus in the luxury car market. It has leather seats, powered everything including the sunroof, and four-wheel steering. The build quality is as good as anything out of Germany, the metallic paint job is in as good condition as the day it rolled off the assembly line, and there is no rust. Everything still works.

        My Eunos is nearly 20 years old, and it’s STILL a better built, higher quality car than anything coming out of GM and Ford in Australia today, despite two decades of manufacturing innovation.

        20

        • #
          crakar24

          No attempt was ever made to explore or develop an export market

          This is not true, next time you are O/S hire a chevy Lumina you will be surprised how similar it is to a local product.

          The big problem here is cost, we cannot build a car here for the same price as O/S companies and yes a sheltered work shop leads to complacency and lack of innovation.

          To Fords credit they did spend big bucks on developing a local engine (3.9L and now 4.0L) in the Falcon range a VT commodore still had push rods (old Buick motor).

          Ford spent bazillions in building a V8 plant in geelong which would pay itself off after 10 years, they pulled it out after 3 and rebuilt it in Mexico then imported the engines as it was cheaper to do it that way.

          Thats the way of all our manufacturing, when my Telstra internet connection falls over as it routinely does and i make the call i get someone in India/Philippines, tey cant speak english and even if they did they could not help/give a reasonable explanation as to why it has failed or an ETA on when it will be fixed.

          Name a manufacturing sector and you will find it has been outsourced either in part or whole.

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          • #

            The cost is crucial. Volkswagen have become masters have providing a huge range of cars for different segments of the market but with many common parts. In Europe, Skoda is the cheapest, then Spanish Seat, then VW, with Audi at the top. They have some commonality of floorpans, switchgear and engines, but cater for distinct market segments. Even the premium Porsche and Bentley brands share technology with VW models.
            To be successful in the modern world needs a huge input of established technology. Niche sports car companies can buy an engine and the larger companies will sell them many of the fixtures. But want to start a mass-production company? Unless you have a group of real geniuses with a number of phenomenal innovations, and tens of billions of dollars to invest, forget it. You will end up with another DeLorean.

            10

      • #

        Hi Andrew,

        I can see why you are torn between Government Industrial policy and letting free markets work. Getting a perspective on these issues – which can adversely affect the lives of thousands of people – is difficult. I have written a blog posting that I hope will help a proper debate. The title should indicate on which side I fall on this debate.
        http://manicbeancounter.com/2013/05/27/australian-car-industry-when-in-a-hole-stop-digging/

        The major messages I want to get across are:-

        - Learn from other countries. Britain in the 1970s for instance.
        - When in a hole, stop digging. If the car industry is failing, throwing money at it might win a few votes, but damage the economy.
        - Australians have the energy, and entrepreneurial skills, in abundance to create new wealth-generating opportunities.
        - Australians (like other countries) are being crippled by the short-sighted hand of Government, who should recognize that they (the politicians) do not have the skills, nor the incentives required to create an industrial policy that is of net benefit to the country as a whole.

        10

    • #
      ianl8888

      I can’t quite agree with the “Bjelke-as-man-of-vision” notion. He certainly encouraged Utah and others to start development the Bowen Basin for its’ top-grade coking coal and to that end overseas capital was raised to build the rail lines. Good, even excellent, vision so far … but then Joh expropriated the rail lines (for the common good, of course) and added insult to injury by charging rail freight on the “aquired” lines. Vision degraded …

      No one trusts politicians at all any more. Adriani and others in the Galilee Basin have invested many, many $millions in aquisition to exploit the shallow coal seams (billions of tonnes of reasonably high-quality thermal coal) but the Feds keep moving environmental goal posts. This constant changing of the rules is deliberate. Why should any capital investment happen in such a fetid mess ?

      Australia’s ASX is too thin on its’ own to supply capital in the large amounts needed – overseas capital is now too frightened (I’ve just finished a DD project for some heavy South Korean investors who decided against, for just this reason)

      10

      • #
        MemoryVault

        Hi Ian,

        I didn’t actually mean my piece as a eulogy to Joh. Lord knows, he had his faults. It probably wasn’t even “his” vision – just one he agreed with. Nonetheless, he actively promoted and campaigned for it.

        It should also be remembered that when Joh came to power in QLD coal was considered a “strategic resource” and export was banned under federal law. One the one hand it was considered vital for electricity production (my how times change), and on the other, “official” estimates were that we didn’t have very much of it.

        It was Joh who campaigned to have official policy reversed and the export ban lifted.

        Today coal is our biggest single export earner. Imagine where we’d be without that revenue.

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    macha

    Anyone can see the declining trend in Australian manufacturing (as a %GDP).

    http://www.tradingeconomics.com/australia/manufacturing-value-added-percent-of-gdp-wb-data.html

    It’s not sudden and we will need to continue to re-invent and re-invest in areas where we are more competitive.

    20

  • #
    KinkyKeith

    This post at WUWT puts the mockers on the idea that CO2 levels were always low until man started to become industrialised.

    Warmers have simply taken advantage of the very low responsiveness of ice core data to play the average game.

    It would seem that the recent trending high of CO2 is not unusual when looked at in light of other methods of analysis.

    Some fantastic graphs.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/12/26/co2-ice-cores-vs-plant-stomata/

    KK :)

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    • #
      Manfred

      …and some undeniably inconvenient FAB facts:

      The carbon cycle lags behind the climate cycle and thus does not drive the climate cycle.

      The lag time is consistent with the hypothesis of a temperature-driven carbon cycle.

      The anthropogenic contribution to the carbon cycle since 1860 is minimal and inconsequential.

      30

      • #
        Tim

        Hi Manfred – The IPCC would have known this years ago. To me that adds yet another fraud to the list.

        20

  • #
    Bulldust

    Julia beat Tony to the punch … Department of Climate Change is no more (as an autonomous entity):

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/jobs-go-under-climate-change-department-merger/story-fn59niix-1226651394381

    (tighter link for Bernd this time :)

    I wonder if it is a strategy to make it harder just to axe the DoCC in one go … merge them into a mega department in the hopes of protecting their jobs?

    40

    • #
      MemoryVault

      .
      My sister is a consultant to what was the Department of Climate Change.
      According to her, she still reports to the same people, working in the same building, sitting at the same desks, doing the same jobs.

      As far as she can tell, the only thing that has changed is their letterhead.

      50

      • #
        Tim

        Hi MV – No mention of the number of ‘consultants’ still on/or added to, the department. A large PR firm could easily take up the slack at the ‘right price.’

        Love to see the stats on that. Can she help?

        10

  • #
    Manfred

    new super department of Industry, Innovation, Climate Change, Science, Research and Tertiary Education

    No amount of frantic political sewing could turn the sow’s ear of ‘climate change’ into the departmental silk purse. No siree, it’s likely they will be spurned by their new colleagues, much as one would a rabid dog.

    A minor mixing problem that will be easily overcome by an intelligent touch of leadership and an iron fist of direction.

    30

  • #
    john

    UK met office in deap doo doo. Finally admit that there is no evidence for AGW
    http://bishophill.squarespace.com/

    40

  • #
    crakar24

    Some light reading while we await the end of times

    http://landscheidt.wordpress.com/

    20

  • #
    Joe V.

    Is the backlash against domestic solar PV installations beginning already.

    Europe Green Energy Investors Face Tax on Solar Panels

    That seems grossly unfair, to be discriminating against citizens some of who based their retirement plans on a costed proposition about Feed In Tariffs from the Government.

    It wouldn’t happen in Britain, where the High Court has already overruled the Government in trying to reduce FITs retrospectively.

    10

  • #
    Speedy

    I am Woman.
    (You are misogynist.)
    (Music by Helen Reddy, Lyrics by Julia Gillard.)

    I am Woman, please ignore,
    That I’ve made this country poor,
    And it keeps on getting poorer day by day – ay.
    But I think I’m pretty sure,
    That I’d like to spend some more –
    It’s not as though I’m ever gonna pay…

    Chorus:
    I’ve done no wrong,
    Just some things I can’t explain,
    Tho’ the evidence is strong,
    If you’ve more than half a brain.
    Don’t bother asking –
    Won’t tell you anything…
    ‘Cos I’m wrong (wrong)
    I am convictable (convictable)
    But I’m woman…
    I am woman, and I’ve made,
    It so the “refugees” invade,
    On anything that can cross the sea-ee.
    Sure they’re pretty much low-grade,
    But at least you know they’ve paid -
    People smuggling, it’s a growing industry…

    Chorus:
    I’ve done no wrong,
    Just some things I can’t explain,
    And the evidence is strong,
    To those with half a brain.
    If you ask me,
    I’ll tell you anything…
    ‘Cos I’m wrong (wrong)
    I am unprincipled (unprincipled)
    But I’m woman…

    I am woman, I depend
    On support from ev’ry friend
    Whatever type of creep he seems to be-ee.
    Perverts, cheats and liars tend,
    To be less fussy, and they bend;
    In Parliament, they always vote for me…

    Chorus:
    They’ve done no wrong,
    Just some things they can’t explain,
    Tho’ the evidence is strong,
    If you’ve more than half a brain.
    Don’t bother asking,
    Won’t tell you anything…
    ‘Cos they’re wrong (wrong)
    They are despicable (despicable)
    But I’m woman…

    60

  • #
    Rocky

    Some dodgy data fiddling

    Need a math guru to make sense of the conversation but apparently the CO2 measurements are not all that great

    00

  • #

    [...] Jo Nova’s unthreaded there is a debate going on about Australian car industry. Started up in the post war era, it is [...]

    10

  • #
    Michael

    Fantastic article on FORBES of all places. Very well worth the read and worth spreading further.

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/peterferrara/2013/05/26/to-the-horror-of-global-warming-alarmists-global-cooling-is-here/

    30

  • #

    We were discussing climate change’s warm makes cold makes warm makes extreme weather makes…….mantra and realized this phone service commercial features a future climate scientist:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BgxzjrodNvI

    She has the potential, don’t you think? :)

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  • #
    janama

    No – the advertising agency that promotes more has potential – she’s just another victim of clever editing.

    10

    • #

      You may have a point there. Whoever wrote that ad would be great for promoting climate change. They make nonsense sound convincing!

      00

  • #
    D Cotton

    The Uranus Dilemma

    Consideration of the planet Uranus very clearly indicates that radiative models (and any type of “Energy Budget” similar to those produced by the IPCC) can never be used to explain observed temperatures on Uranus. We can deduce that there must be some other physical process which transfers some of the energy absorbed in the upper levels of the Uranus atmosphere from the meagre 3W/m^2 of Solar radiation down into its depths, and that same mechanism must “work” on all planets with significant atmospheres..

    Uranus is an unusual planet in that there is no evidence of any internal heat generation. Yet, as we read in this Wikipedia article, the temperature at the base of its (theoretical) troposphere is about 320K – quite a hot day on Earth. But it gets hotter still as we go further down in an atmosphere that is nearly 20,000Km in depth. Somewhere down there it is thought that there is indeed a solid core with about half the mass of Earth. The surface of that mini Earth is literally thousands of degrees. And of course there’s no Solar radiation reaching anywhere near that depth.

    So how does the necessary energy get down there, or even as far as the 320K base of the troposphere? An explanation of this requires an understanding of the spontaneous process described in the Second Law of Thermodynamics, which is stated here as …

    “The second law of thermodynamics: An isolated system, if not already in its state of thermodynamic equilibrium, spontaneously evolves towards it. Thermodynamic equilibrium has the greatest entropy amongst the states accessible to the system”

    Think about it, and I’ll be happy to answer any questions – and explain what actually happens, not only on Uranus, Venus, Jupiter etc, but also on Earth.

    01

    • #

      Just to be clear – what you’re saying is there’s no such thing as the “Greenhouse Effect”, right?

      00

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        Mark D.

        What business do you have asking this question here when you haven’t even admitted that the term is fundamentally wrong in the previous thread?

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        D Cotton

        The warming that is attributed to back radiation (because it slows radiative surface cooling) is assumed to be of the order of 33 degrees. Water vapour is the main “greenhouse gas” and so you would expect, say, 50 degrees of warming in a moist region and perhaps only 5 degrees of warming in a dry region with only 10% as much water vapour. This simply doesn’t happen, so there’s the first, and rather obvious problem. There’s a study of real world data in the Appendix in my paper which shows moist regions have lower daily maximum and minimum temperatures – quite the opposite of what the IPCC would like you to believe.

        The Sun could never raise the surface to a mean of 288K in the first place, so slowing of cooling does not make the surface hotter than direct Solar radiation could do on its own in the absence of an atmosphere. I can’t re-type 20 pages of text and diagrams from my paper here, so perhaps you could read it, especially Sections 4 to 9 for a better understanding. Do you have any alternative explanation as to what happens on Uranus?

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        D Cotton

        From the IPCC Glossary of Terms page we read …

        Greenhouse effect

        Greenhouse gases effectively absorb infrared radiation, emitted
        by the Earth’s surface, by the atmosphere itself due to the same
        gases, and by clouds. Atmospheric radiation is emitted to all sides,
        including downward to the Earth’s surface. Thus greenhouse
        gases trap heat within the surface-troposphere system. This is
        called the “natural greenhouse effect.” Atmospheric radiation
        is strongly coupled to the temperature of the level at which it
        is emitted. In the troposphere, the temperature generally decreases
        with height. Effectively, infrared radiation emitted to space
        originates from an altitude with a temperature of, on average,
        -19°C, in balance with the net incoming solar radiation, whereas
        the Earth’s surface is kept at a much higher temperature of, on
        average, +14°C. An increase in the concentration of greenhouse
        gases leads to an increased infrared opacity of the atmosphere,
        and therefore to an effective radiation into space from a higher
        altitude at a lower temperature. This causes a radiative forcing,
        an imbalance that can only be compensated for by an increase
        of the temperature of the surface-troposphere system. This is
        the “enhanced greenhouse effect.”

        Just below that we also read that water vapour is one of the primary greenhouse gases supposedly causing most of the warming, as it is far more prolific than all the rest combined. So see what should happen, but doesn’t, in moist regions compared with dry ones in the study I published in the Appendix of “Planetary Core and Surface Temperatures.”

        So, if you think that this “greenhouse effect” is what somehow allows a mere 10W/m^2 of direct Solar radiation reaching the Venus surface (that is, about 10% of what reaches Earth’s surface) to somehow (on its own) cause an “increase of the temperature” of the Venus surface to about 730K, even at its poles and during the four-month long night, then you decide for yourself whether such a “greenhouse effect” is a reality.

        Certainly planetary atmospheres raise surface temperatures, but more by non-radiative processes than any radiative forcing, the physics explaining this being in my paper. The solid core of Uranus is about half the mass of Earth. It receives no direct Solar radiation, and yet is thousands of degrees hot, despite the fact that Uranus is about 29 times further from the Sun than is Earth. “Radiative forcing” indeed!

        Douglas Cotton
        Physicist and Climate Science Researcher

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        • #
          LtCusper

          D Cotton 1:48pm: “if you think that this “greenhouse effect” is what somehow allows a mere 10W/m^2 of direct Solar radiation reaching the Venus surface (that is, about 10% of what reaches Earth’s surface) to somehow (on its own) cause an “increase of the temperature” of the Venus surface to about 730K, even at its poles and during the four-month long night, then you decide for yourself whether such a “greenhouse effect” is a reality.”

          Yes, I’ve decided for myself such an effect is reality & fits into Dr. Spencer’s paradigm well from the various venus probe measurements & radio occultation science work from reading specialist papers. This measured effect reality is easy to observe: Earth’s near surface global thermometers measure ~288K and earth satellites measure ~255K (technically during the period March 2000 to May 2004). For venus, surface thermometers measure 730K, and satellites measure 234K.

          D Cotton continues: “Certainly planetary atmospheres raise surface temperatures, but more by non-radiative processes than any radiative forcing, the physics explaining this being in my paper.”

          I can’t find surface temperature calculated anywhere in D Cotton’s paper(s). Dr. Spencer calculates earth mean surface temperature at 288.23K and his same calculations result in 256.12K close to satellite measurements. D Cotton has not published any similar calculations AFAIK. Dr. Spencer and text book paradigms stand.

          D Cotton asks: “…try explaining..Venus with (Dr.) Spencer’s models.”

          Ok. There is no try, only do or do not. 1st for earth: Dr. Spencer’s paradigm models show during March 2000 to May 2004, primary radiative balance from/to deep space is (approx. flux densities in W/m^2):

          • SW IR radiation in from sun 341, deposited at surface 161, reflected LW 102 and OLR~239 thermal atm. emission up primarily through IR atm. windows obscured by H2O, CO2,O3,CH4,N2.

          • Balanced since 341 in = 239 out + 102 reflected never absorbed.

          • Surface UWIR = 396 (289K) transported to tropopause by moist convection, LH and thermal radiative transfer, resulting in total atm. LW down emission at surface DWIR = 333 (both UWIR and DWIR are roughly measured locally but not globally temporally and spatially avg.d AFAIK.)

          Clouds primarily scatter solar SW IR radiation but are strongly absorbing (black bodies) in the LW IR; high clouds (above tropopause) cause net warming, low clouds in troposphere cause net cooling.

          For venus, which due orbital parameters receives almost twice as much solar radiation in from deep space as earth, primary radiative balance from/to deep space is (approx. flux densities in W/m^2):

          • Venus clouds reflect ~76% of the incident radiation back to deep space never absorbed

          • Total available net (of albedo) radiation absorbed ~170 W/m^2 = emitted OLR measured by satellites (~234K) in balance temporally and spatially avg.d.

          • About half of that 170 is deposited within or above the H2SO4 cloud tops (~65km) thru near IR absorption, about 68 absorbed in thick atm. in part by the H2SO4 and CO2 below the cloud deck & above surface.

          • Solar flux reaching & deposited at surface is ~17 W/m^2 global spatial and temporal avg.d.

          For venus, Dr, Spencer’s paradigm models show the surface temperature ~730K is maintained by net downward atm. emitted thermal flux at surface (DWIR) ~15,000 W/m^2 developed from the thick, optically opaque near surface atm. allowing no true atm. windows at IR wavelengths > 3 microns; H2SO4 clouds add significant thermal opacity.

          Also for venus, there is little latitudinal variation in thermal emission from the measured nearly isothermal cloud tops meaning effective dynamical processes transport more heat than earth from the equator to the poles. But still we don’t well know the vertical T profile poleward of ~60 degrees.

          For venus, even Rayleigh scattering is a significant source of extinction within the lower atm., below the cloud base. Trace gases SO2, H2O,CO,OCS provide opacity between the strong CO2 absorption bands.

          Got that? Learned enough on venus? Search the appropriate specialist stuff if even more would be interesting.

          ******

          As far as Uranus, it has some issues. The internal atm. temperature is not well understood on a cursory glance, Uranus doesn’t exhibit Kelvin-Helmholtz heating in addition to sun as do Jupiter and Saturn with their lower atm. high temperatures. I will leave Uranus to D Cotton, fill me in.

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            D Cotton

            I don’t care what satellites measure for Venus outward radiative flux at TOA. That is nearly all just being radiated back to space after being absorbed in the upper atmosphere. The plain facts are that only about 2.5% of the incident Solar radiation gets through to the surface. I told you it was about 10W/m^2. The Russian probes that landed on the surface and measured it allowed the Russians to estimate a mean of between 10W/m^2 and 20W/m^2 for the sunlit side. In contrast, for direct Solar radiation to raise the temperature to 730K it would need to be about 16,100W/m^2 (by SBL) perhaps adjusted a little for emissivity.

            Of course I know you can do calculations with a spreadsheet – and you can do likewise with some simple geometry, calculating the surface temperature “backwards” using a known temperature at a high altitude and the calculated -g/Cp thermal gradient, which has nothing to do with any “lapsing” process. You can do such calculations for any planet. But calculations are not explaining the non-radiative process which is actually transferring thermal energy absorbed at various altitudes (when night becomes day) down to the surface, even though there is an upward thermal gradient.

            Do you understand from my paper how and why that gradient “evolves spontaneously” because of the process described in the Second Law of Thermodynamics which says thermodynamic equilibrium “spontaneously evolves” and that thermodynamic equilibrium is isentropic and thus cannot be isothermal in a vertical plane in a gravitational field?

            And no, the figures quoted by Science of Doom for insolation reaching the Venus surface are totally incorrect by more than a factor of 10. So don’t try to tell me there is about 170W/m^2 of direct insolation absorbed by the Venus surface. Even if that were correct, it is nothing like the 16,100W/m^2 that would be required if it were actually direct incident Solar radiation that is heating the Venus surface and maintaining its 730K temperature.

            It’s not. The required thermal energy gets to the base of the Venus atmosphere slowly by non-radiative convection processes flowing over a sloping thermal plane which is maintained by gravity as it maintains the thermodynamic equilibrium described in the Second Law of Thermodynamics.

            For more detail read and study carefully what is explained in Sections 4 to 9 of my paper because that is the only known mechanism which can explain observed temperatures, not only in all planetary atmospheres, but also beneath the surface in Earth’s crust and mantle.

            Do you ever wonder why the centre of our Moon is probably well over 1,000K? Or why the possibly solid core of Uranus (a bit smaller than Earth) is thousands of degrees? It is not Solar radiation getting down there that is heating it up. How could it be?

            You still have not provided any alternative explanation as to how the required thermal energy (which is initially absorbed in the uppermost layers of the atmosphere of Uranus, and nearly all re-emitted to Space from there) gets down to the depths of the Uranus atmosphere, with ever increasing temperatures on the way down. Your spreadsheet would have zero value entries for any radiation from the Sun for nearly all layers below the uppermost layer, and likewise very low, decreasing values on Venus.

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          D Cotton

          LtCusper:

          I really don’t know how anyone with even the slightest understanding of the physics of the atmosphere (a field in which I have specialised) could believe (as you wrote) that for Venus “the surface temperature ~730K is maintained by net downward atm. emitted thermal flux at surface (DWIR) ~15,000 W/m^2.” Where does that energy in the atmosphere come from? By radiation from the surface itself I suppose you would say. But how did the surface get the energy in the first place? By radiation from the atmosphere I suppose you would say. A little circular may I suggest.

          I have explained how the base of the atmosphere is heated by non-radiative processes as heat “creeps” up the shallow thermal gradient and physically downwards towards the surface, all as part of the process of maintaining thermodynamic equilibrium, as described in the Second Law of Thermodynamics.

          Do you understand what I have explained in the paper, even if you choose to disbelieve it? Do you understand that it is essentially a corollary of the Second Law that a thermal gradient must evolve spontaneously at the molecular level? If not, try re-reading my paper more carefully, and then feel free to ask any genuine questions thereon.

          You have provided no explanation as to how the much lower incident Solar radiation somehow gets magnified to 15,000W/m^2, and then gets through the rest of the Venus atmosphere which is known to block 97.5% of incident Solar radiation. Furthermore, you are very obviously expecting this presumably spontaneous radiation from the far cooler atmosphere to somehow transfer thermal energy to a far hotter surface. May I suggest you read my peer-reviewed paper “Radiated Energy and the Second Law of Thermodynamics” published on several sites over a year ago in March 2012.

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            LtCusper

            D Cotton 5:59pm et. al.: I asked on the thread discussing the reduced but positive climate sensitivity:

            “…can I see D Cotton calculations of global near surface T from those parameters listed in sec. 9? And don’t confuse those calc.s of the DALR or moist lapse AGAIN. Already shown the lapse rate calc.s, need the actual global surface T calculated in K with D Cotton “above mentioned parameters”.”

            I see D Cotton subsequent posts on this thread and the other one but you do not use your 50 years of atm. study to show a calculation of the global near surface temperature from 1st law energy balance as does Dr. Spencer in any of them. His paradigm stands until D Cotton can do so.

            I am interested enough to have spent several hours reading through and understanding your various links but can’t find the simple calculation anywhere in them that you purport exists. Just prove it by showing it.

            D Cotton states I have provided no explanation for venus!….. yet I did so at 2:57pm.

            *********

            The actual venus T profile surface to TOA has been derived by others (see specialist papers) using Dr. Spencer’s approach iteratively to venus thermally opaque atm.

            Here’s how they did it, I can add more if you are interested:

            Assume any old isothermal venus profile. Compute the energy out at TOA from what we know about venus atm. mass m and Cp and apply 1st law temporally and spatially avg.d (you don’t need the second law explicitly b/c this is a forced system):

            170 W/m^2 energy radiated in from deep space – energy radiated out to deep space = m*Cp*dT/dt

            Use a time step of say 10,000 years from a surface T of say 234K, starting energy out ~.001 find the new surface T stepped up a bit from the atm. mass heating up and find the lapse from g/Cp up to tropopause, then isothermal, then increasing, then isothermal, then decreasing to space T.

            170 W/m^2 in – .001 W/m^2 = m*Cp*dT/dt

            Find a big delta T. Rinse and repeat after each 10,000 year step (similar to Dr. Spencer temperature rise steps) until after about 4.15mln years dT/dt slows to near 0: find venus has raised surface T to 730K to forcibly radiate out enough energy to deep space & get in LTE balance just like Dr. Spencer shows for earth but for venus this is the balance:

            170 W/m^2 – 170 W/m^2 = 0 at LTE

            which is why D Cotton should care what satellites measure today.

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  • #
    D Cotton

    So, as we saw above, the IPCC (in its Glossary of Terms under “Greenhouse Effect”) refers to a “radiative forcing” effect which is by no means adequately explained in terms of physics. The concept of all radiation coming from a certain altitude is pure fiction. In fact most radiation comes from where water vapour is most prolific, somewhere around an altitude of 3Km. Radiative flux is quantified with the Stefan-Boltzmann Law, and it is nothing like a nice linear function declining with altitude. Quite a bit comes from the surface straight to space anyway. The altitude at which equal amounts of outward radiation come from above and below (including the surface) can be shown to be about 3.0Km to 3.5Km. The whole plot rotates around this pivoting altitude such that it has a less steep gradient in moist regions, and thus intersects the surface at a lower temperature.

    Now, it is blatantly obvious that a planet’s atmosphere does indeed lead to the surface being hotter than it would have been if it only received the same amount of incident Solar radiation but had no atmosphere. Venus would receive only 10W/m^2 and would thus be far colder without an atmosphere. Uranus would receive nothing from the Sun, and would thus be colder than 3K. Even if it received all of the Solar radiation reaching its TOA (about 3W/m^2) it would be colder than 60K.

    So it is very clear that the concept of energy budgets supposedly balancing energy and, in effect, instantaneously determining surface temperatures is fictitious. The energy required to maintain these surface temperatures has built up over the life of the planet from just a small amount of the daily dose of Solar radiation, most of which, but not quite all, was radiated back to Space.

    [b]It is not a day to day balancing act, and so all radiative forcing and all energy budgets, even for Earth, are totally irrelevant.[/b]

    The Sun is not heating the atmosphere and outer crust from zero K each day. Thermal energy has built up over many years and is trapped by the gravity effect which keeps more of it closer to the surface than to the top of the troposphere. It does so by the spontaneous evolving process described in the Second Law of Thermodynamics. Heat can and does flow up the very shallow thermal gradient which represents the thermodynamic equilibrium described in the Second Law of Thermodynamics. In doing so, flowing away from a new source of energy which is disturbing the thermodynamic equilibrium, it is merely acting with a propensity to restore the thermodynamic equilibrium, just as the Second Law says it will.

    That is how some of the incident Solar radiation absorbed by the atmosphere as night becomes day makes its way towards the surface, maintaining the thermal gradient determined by gravity (and reduced a little by inter-molecular radiation) so that the base of the troposphere is kept warm and thus “supports” surface temperatures. This is a non-radiative convection process which has nothing to do with radiative forcing. Radiative models are simply not relevant.

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    Adam Smith

    Nice to see today that the House of Representatives unanimously endorsed the proposition that climate change is real and is caused by human activities.

    Not a single M.P. voted against the proposal.

    11

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    D Cotton

    LtCusper

    I accept that you said only ~17W/m^2 of direct insolation is deposited at the Venus surface. I’m not going to argue over a difference between that and my figure of 10W/m^2. We both more or less agree that it is only about a tenth of what Earth’s surface receives. That very fact ought to cast doubt in anyone’s mind. Why wouldn’t Earth be much hotter than Venus then?

    My reference to this article on the “Science of Doom” site was to draw the attention of those silent readers who think SoD is a great authority to cite, that he was in fact totally incorrect, for that article reads “The surface receives radiation from the sun, S. In the case of Venus this value would be (averaged across the surface), S = 158 W/m².” Mmmmm! His 158W/m^2 is somewhat different from our 17 or 10W/m^2. Of course he is also wrong in thinking that the energy that does reach the Venus surface can somehow be multiplied by about 1,000 (from your 17 to 16,000 W/m^2) by multiple iterations of surface radiation and atmospheric back radiation. The required energy just doesn’t get down there by radiation from the Sun.

    The Venus surface cannot be heated by direct Solar radiation to temperatures like 730K even at its poles. The poles receive their thermal energy by the same diffusion and convection processes I have described, and these processes also ensure that the dark side of Venus only cools about 5 degrees in the 4 month long Venus night. There’s no mystery in the physics, once you understand what I have explained.

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    LtCusper

    D Cotton 6:27pm: “Why wouldn’t Earth be much hotter than Venus then?”

    A very astute question. Considering a balance of 170 OLR W/m^2 at venus and 240 OLR W/m^2 at earth. It does seem logical to answer earth should be hotter, but that’s not what we observe. The reason? Our lying eyes can’t see in IR bands. We have to use instruments.

    Earth atm. emissivity measured at surface looking up globally avg.d is about 0.8 (0.7 arctic, 0.95 tropics) meaning the optically thin atm. doesn’t absorb 20% of the outgoing surface LW. Some of the LW IR from the 288K surface can get out to deep space at the speed of light right away; it doesn’t even hit many clouds. If you are an avg. IR photon, you can get out to deep space pretty easy; the surface temperature only needs to reach 288K to brute force you out on avg. given earth’s global surface 0.8 atm. emissivity.

    Venus atm. emissivity at its surface in contrast is 1.0, a very optically thick atm. It absorbs ALL the surface outgoing IR (just after the atm. absorbed all but 17 of the incoming 170) and same goes for up to a very high altitude, and there is 100% cloud cover on Venus. Man, if you are venusian IR photon near surface, you can’t get out no matter how hard you try until the surface temperature simply brute forces you out when it reaches ~730K.

    Over 4.15mln years, this venus’ process achieves equilibrium (sooner for earth as Dr. Spencer shows) because the smaller mass he needs use for earth surface layer needs only 30day time steps to converge on equilibrium.

    D Cotton could actually use Dr. Spencer’s spreadsheet and see how this works for venus mass (10,000 year time steps might work better). If you simply use an opacity of 1.78 for venus – 1st try sort of thing, not physical – really you need to iterate to find what altitude the venus opacity reduces below 1.0.

    If I just tell you, you won’t learn as much in this paradigm. It all works out according to what we really observe for earth, mars (opposite of 1.0 venus – w/nearly 100% thermally transparent atm.), venus, earth’s moon (no atm.), and is being applied to exoplanets along with Titan. Basic text books can fill in the details if interested given your 50yrs of physics training.

    I agree Uranus is a strange duck, but applying these atm. radiation text book principles will get you closer to understanding Uranus (I bet) than just the parameters you suggest. Plus these radiative 1st principles are very useful for ginning up some understanding of exoplanets once we can sort of est. some of the atm. parameters from observation (composition, net insolation, depth & opacity, mass, et. al.)

    D Cotton: “The required energy just doesn’t get down there by radiation from the Sun.”

    Right, all but 17 (your 10) of the 170 balance is absorbed 1st by the atm., most (170-17) incoming SW IR doesn’t even reach the surface, but oh boy, does the hot atm. emit the LW toward surface (the 15,000 W/m^2).

    D Cotton continues: “There’s no mystery in the physics, once you understand what I have explained.”

    I have understood your explanation in your paper(s). The mystery is what you explain isn’t able to compute a simple, basic global mean surface temperature, at least all my reading of your links does not find it. Again, just show it, if you got it. I’d be interested to follow along.

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      D Cotton

      The spreadsheet is based on the false assumption that radiation from a cooler source can transfer thermal energy to, and thus increase the temperature of a warmer target. It cannot do so, as explained in my March 2012 paper “Radiated Energy and the Second Law of Thermodynamics.” It can only slow that portion of surface cooling which is itself by radiation. Non-radiative surface cooling is not affected, and could easily cool the Venus surface when there is only 10W/m^2 opposing it. Well, it could if there were no supporting underlying thermal plot which is maintained by gravity.

      Computations are meaningless if they include assumptions which violate physical laws. You have not explained how the thermal energy gets down to the surface in the first place, whereas I have in explaining the “heat creep” non-radiative process which occurs as the thermodynamic equilibrium state described in the Second Law of Thermodynamics evolves spontaneously in a combination of diffusion and convection processes. See the other comment I have just posted here and soon on several other climate blogs.

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        LtCusper

        D Cotton 8:48am – “The spreadsheet is based on the false assumption that radiation from a cooler source can transfer thermal energy to, and thus increase the temperature of a warmer target.”

        No, the spreadsheet is not based on that false assumption so the calculations are meaningful.

        There is no assumption that radiation from a cooler source can transfer thermal energy to, and thus increase the temperature of a warmer target in the spreadsheet. If there were, Dr. Spencer’s calculations from measured input data would be off from reality & they are not; the calculation of 288.23 is correct to within 1K both for thermometer global mean measured surface T= 288K and calculation of 256.12K vs. satellite measured T= 255K for the earth period March 2000 to May 2004.

        The only assumption in the spreadsheet is the 1st law of thermo for any defined system:

        thermal energy into system – thermal energy out of system = change in system thermal energy

        That is literally all the spreadsheet does, very rock solid assumption, that’s why they call it a law. More energy out get cooling of the mass, more energy in get warming of the mass. There is changing T coming to equilibrium, when in balance find a steady T. 1st law steady T balance:

        thermal energy into system – thermal energy out of system = 0

        For venus, 170 -170 = 0, for earth, 240-240 = 0 (not counting reflected radiation; only counting the radiation absorbed).

        Simple, basic science by Dr. Spencer computes accurate basic global mean near surface temperature and D Cotton paper(s) are just not capable to do so that I can find.

        D Cotton continues: “You have not explained how the thermal energy gets down to the surface in the first place,…”

        Of the 170input, all but 17 is absorbed in the thick 730K hot atm. which emits the ~15,000 W/m^2 at the surface in equilibrium 170in-170out=0. See my 2:57pm comment above. Copy & paste here for convenience:

        • Venus clouds reflect ~76% of the incident radiation back to deep space never absorbed.

        • Total available net (of albedo) radiation absorbed ~170 W/m^2 = emitted OLR measured by satellites (~234K) in balance temporally and spatially avg.d.

        • About half of that 170 is deposited within or above the H2SO4 cloud tops (~65km) thru near IR absorption, about 68 absorbed in thick atm. in part by the H2SO4 and CO2 below the cloud deck & above surface.

        • Solar flux density reaching & deposited at surface is ~17 W/m^2 global spatial and temporal avg.d.

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    D Cotton

    If you believe that planetary surface temperatures are all to do with radiative forcing rather than non-radiative heat transfers, then you are implicitly agreeing with IPCC authors (and Roy Spencer) that a column of air in the troposphere would have been isothermal but for the assumed greenhouse effect. You are believing this because you are believing the 19th century simplification of the Second Law of Thermodynamics which said heat only transfers from hot to cold – a “law” which is indeed true for all radiation, but only strictly true in a horizontal plane for non-radiative heat transfer by conduction.

    The Second Law of Thermodynamics in its modern form explains a process in which thermodynamic equilibrium “spontaneously evolves” and that thermodynamic equilibrium will be the state of greatest accessible entropy.

    Now, thermodynamic equilibrium is not just about temperature, which is determined by the mean kinetic energy of molecules, and nothing else. Pressure, for example, does not control temperature. Thermodynamic equilibrium is a state in which total energy (including potential energy) is homogeneous, because if it were not homogeneous, then work could be done and so entropy could still increase.

    When such a state of thermodynamic equilibrium evolves in a vertical plane in any solid, liquid or gas, molecules at the top of a column will have more gravitational potential energy (PE), and so they must have less kinetic energy (KE), and so a lower temperature, than molecules at the bottom of the column. This state evolves spontaneously as molecules interchange PE and KE in free flight between collisions, and then share the adjusted KE during the next collision.

    This postulate was put forward by the brilliant physicist Loschmidt in the 19th century, but has been swept under the carpet by those advocating that radiative forcing is necessary to explain the observed surface temperatures. Radiative forcing could never explain the mean temperature of the Venus surface, or that at the base of the troposphere of Uranus – or that at the surface of Earth.

    The gravitationally induced temperature gradient in every planetary troposphere is fully sufficient to explain all planetary surface temperatures. All the weak attempts to disprove it, such as a thought experiment with a wire outside a cylinder of gas, are flawed, simply because they neglect the temperature gradient in the wire itself, or other similar oversights.

    The gravity effect is a reality and the dispute is not an acceptable disagreement.

    The issue is easy to resolve with a straight forward, correct understanding of the implications of the spontaneous process described in statements of the Second Law of Thermodynamics.

    Hence radiative forcing is not what causes the warming, and so carbon dioxide has nothing to do with what is just natural climate change.

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    LtCusper

    D Cotton 8:39am: “…then you are implicitly agreeing…that a column of air in the troposphere would have been isothermal… You are believing this because…”

    Please do not tell me what I believe. I know the specialist papers are correct; that a standard earth atm. column from surface up to near the tropopause when isolated using theory would become T(z) non-constant so non-isothermal in a reasonable time as the experts derive using the 2nd law.

    Note that once the column is isolated in theory, the 2nd law becomes useful as the radiative forcing is removed. You can’t just use KE+PE = constant, the key is hold gas enthalpy constant, maximize column entropy with math – find air column becomes isentropic at the max. entropy point in thermodynamic equilibrium.

    D Cotton continues: “All the weak attempts to disprove it, such as a thought experiment with a wire outside a cylinder of gas, are flawed, simply because they neglect the temperature gradient in the wire itself, or other similar oversights.”

    I agree! (Though I think you might mean a wire “inside” the cylinder.) Non-isothermal T(z) as shown by poisson eqn. for the isolated column is just what the experts tell us in specialist papers.

    D Cotton continues: “Hence radiative forcing is not what causes the
    warming, and so carbon dioxide has nothing to do with what is just natural climate change.”

    Reminder once again: D Cotton has yet to show how the surface temperature comes to 288K like in Dr. Spencer’s spreadsheet without radiative forcing. After all, radiation is all that comes in to earth system or gets out to deep space.

    Fun discussion, thanks.

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      D Cotton

      OK, LtCusper. Good to see you agree down to a point and I give you more credit than the average climatologist like Roy Spencer who thinks isothermal conditions would occur. Of course the whole IPCC greenhouse conjecture is built upon such a conjecture, so I take it you agree that radiative forcing does not raise the surface temperature by 33 C degrees from the isothermal 255K. So we seem to agree, except that your spreadsheet is of course based on Dr Spencer’s isothermal assumption, so you may wish to reconsider using such.

      It’s quite easy then to do the calculations using the gravity effect. You get the effective “dry” gradient using -g/Cp which is about 9.8C/Km for Earth, and a little higher (around 12C/Km) for Venus because the specific heat of carbon dioxide at those temperatures varies but is mostly less than that of air, more so than the gravity on Venus is less than Earth’s. You can also do similar calculations for Uranus using a weighted mean specific heat for about 85% Hydrogen and 15% helium (give or take a bit) and it works there too. There are calculations for Venus in Miatello’s paper which is cited in mine, so I didn’t bother repeating such.

      For example, for Earth if you want to use typical IPCC simplifications, you can say 255K at 5Km altitude, and so about 50 degrees hotter at the surface. Then you “cool” the surface by recognising that water vapour reduces the gradient by about one-third as it brings inter-molecular radiation into the thermodynamic equilibrium. This brings it back to about 288K.

      In fact, using my back of the envelope calculations with SBL, I estimate that the real pivoting altitude is more like 3.0Km to 3.5Km. However, the 255K is questionable because of flat Earth assumptions, emissivity assumptions etc. The real calculation would require comprehensive modelling, and I don’t have millions to spend on such. But it could be, say 260K and the dry rate would then give between 290K and 295K using 3.0Km to 3.5Km altitude. Then the cooling by water back to 288K is more in keeping with the data I observed in the study in the Appendix of my paper. So I’ll back these figures from the empirical evidence, and trust you won’t disagree that 260K is not an unrealistic variation from 255K.

      The main point in all of this is that non-radiative processes – the “heat creep” process (for which I coined the name) being a combination of diffusion and downward convection, is what transfers heat to the base of the troposphere, where the temperature then “supports” the surface temperature and allows the Sun to heat to a higher temperature in the day than it would if the surface had cooled below the supporting temperature the night before. This is explained in Section 9 and the “heat creep” is developed in Sections 4 to 8 of my paper.

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    LtCusper

    D Cotton 1:19pm: “..you can say 255K at 5Km altitude…”

    No, you can’t just “say” that. You have to calculate the 255K by energy balance at that altitude. It is much easier to calculate 288K at surface b/c the specialist papers Dr. Spencer cites serve as a ref. for the energy balance at the surface.

    D Cotton: “..spreadsheet is of course based on Dr Spencer’s isothermal assumption..”

    Dr. Spencer’s spreadsheet is NOT based on any isothermal assumption. I just wrote it is only based on 1st law assumed correct, come on! Reread my 9:51am: “The only assumption in the spreadsheet is the 1st law of thermo…”.

    D Cotton: “…you agree that radiative forcing does not raise the surface temperature by 33 C degrees from the isothermal 255K.”

    No I do not, the spreadsheet shows you why as I have repeatedly written, sheesh. The 255K is for no theoretical atm. radiative transfer i.e. atm. emissivity = 0 in the spreadsheet, while leaving convective and conductive heat transfer operating. Turn up global atm. emissivity from 0 to 0.8 and find the spreadsheet shows 288K. So turning on atm. emissivity i.e. radiation does raise mean global surface temperature 33K. Again, for the time period March 2000 to May 2004.

    D Cotton: “…the 255K is questionable… trust you won’t disagree that 260K is not an unrealistic variation from 255K.”

    No, 255K is not questionable. It is measured by satellite in the period March 2000 to May 2004. Your 260K IS an unreasonable variation.

    D Cotton: “The main point in all of this … where the temperature then “supports” the surface temperature…”

    I can make no sense of that at all. No further comment.

    A reminder once again, to be a player in this stuff: D Cotton has to show how earth global mean surface temperature comes to 288K like in Dr. Spencer’s spreadsheet without radiative forcing which is not done in any of D Cotton’s papers cited. After all, radiation is all that comes in to earth system or gets out to deep space.

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      D Cotton

      LtCusper:

      The fact that you say that you “can make no sense” of what I have explained about how the temperature at the base of the troposphere “supports” the surface temperature just shows me how little you have comprehended of the content of my paper. Try reading the two sections which have the word “support” in their headings …

      9. How Earth’s Surface Temperature is Supported

      15. Support for the Mantle and Core Temperatures

      There can be no doubt that Dr Spencer considers there would have been isothermal temperatures in the atmosphere in the absence of water vapour and radiating gases, and no convection. Do I have to cite his articles? I have rubbished them in my articles on PSI which you can easily find if you search “Roy” on that website. My articles quote from his posts.

      Such a situation without water vapour is unrealistic anyway, but what if the atmosphere had only 20% as much water vapour and no other so-called GH gases? You tell me whether you think the surface temperature would have been higher or lower. I say higher, because water vapour reduces the thermal gradient and thus lowers the supported surface temperature. (Oooops, sorry, you don’t understand what I’m talking about.) What I say is supported empirically by my study in the Appendix of my paper, and theoretically by the rest of the paper.

      Let’s just leave it at the fact that radiative forcing does not explain the temperature gradient on Uranus where it gets hotter and hotter the further you go down, even though only 3W/m^2 is received by the planet and all is re-emitted from the uppermost layers of the atmosphere. I’m still waiting for a better explanation from yourself than the one I have given about how thermal energy can transfer to warmer regions in any troposphere, but only by a slow diffusion and convection process (coined “heat creep” in my paper) and only by the process (described by the Second Law of Thermodynamics) in which a new thermodynamic equilibrium evolves spontaneously.

      In regard to my calculations, the 5Km Dr Spencer uses is based on a linear temperature plot which has no physical significance. I have explained how the plot of temperature against altitude rotates about the pivoting altitude at which there is equal outward radiation above and below, including that from the surface through the atmospheric window. Hence you have to integrate the radiative flux (proportional to T^4 of course) and find where there is equal area under that curve on each side of the pivoting altitude, taking into account that radiation through the window. I have done the calculations and found it to be about 3.5Km. I really don’t care if you believe my figure or not. Furthermore, we really don’t even know the true mean worldwide surface temperature, probably not within 5 degrees anyway. In some places the IPCC says 287K, but it has always been a bit of a guess. And the assumption that the mean temperature over 24 hours at any location is the arithmetic mean of the maximum and minimum temperatures could be way out. Then we have the flat Earth assumptions which treat the Earth as a disk that receives a constant radiative flux from a cold Sun that supposedly would only warm it to 255K. That 255K is not measured. The full incident radiation is measured and divided by 4 because of the simplistic calculations by those who don’t bother to do the job properly by integration over a rotating sphere. Some minor error in emissivity could easily explain a 260K temperature at a surface if there were isothermal conditions, which is what Dr Spencer and IPCC authors assume – look up “Greenhouse Effect” in the IPCC Glossary.

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      D Cotton

      Here’s my calculation for Uranus, done as I write, using info from here and other obvious searches.

      I accept the calculation of effective (radiating) temperature of 59.1K and their temperature of 53K at TOA. These figures are comparable because, with only about 3W/m^2 (at a distance 29 times further from the Sun than Earth) virtually all absorption and re-emission to space is in the uppermost layers of the atmosphere.

      I will use specific heat of hydrogen as about 13 and, from the same website, that of helium as about 5.

      If composition of atmosphere can be simplified to 84% hydrogen and 16% helium the weighted mean specific heat is thus about (.84 x 13) + (.16 x 5) = 11.7. Force of gravity is 8.69, and so thermal gradient is ~8.69/11.7 = ~.743 and so, 350Km lower down at the base of the troposphere the temperature could be calculated as ..

      53 + (350 x .743) = 53 + 260 = 313K. I’m satisfied that the 313K is close enough to the 320K which they estimate, and I note that there appears to be no reduction in this dry rate which I assume is because there is very little inter-molecular radiation within that atmosphere which has only a mere sprinkling of methane.

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      D Cotton

      If you are “leaving convective and conductive heat transfer operating” then the gravitationally induced thermal gradient (“lapse rate” in your language) still has to exist when there is thermodynamic equilibrium – which the Second Law says will indeed “evolve spontaneously.”

      So if you have a temperature of 255K at 5Km, and a thermal gradient of 6.5C/Km then the surface temperature (with plenty of water vapour) can be calculated as (wait for it) …

      255 + (6.5 x 5) = 255 + 32.5 = 287.5K

      But that actually assumes there is inter-molecular radiation (between water vapour molecules) which works against the gravity effect and thus reduces the thermal gradient from the dry one of 9.8C/Km.

      The dry rate would give …

      255 + (9.8 x 5) = 255 + 49 = 304K

      So water vapour leads to a lower supported surface temperature.

      Oooops! Didn’t the IPCC say water vapour is a greenhouse gas which, by radiative forcing, raises the surface temperature by most of 33 degrees?

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        LtCusper

        D Cotton 8:10pm: “That 255K is not measured.”

        Again, Earth’s 255K is as measured by satellite during the period March 2000 to May 2004.

        “The full incident radiation is measured and divided by 4…”

        The divide by 4 comes from simple geometry.

        Again, as I wrote before your section 9 indicates: “What this all comes down to is the fact that the temperature level at which the pre-determined plot intersects the surface is itself pre-determined primarily by the above-mentioned parameters, and not much else of any great significance.”

        Again, if earth’s near surface atm. temperature is really “predetermined” by “the above-mentioned parameters” then you should be able to calculate earth’s near surface atm. temperature from them. You cannot.

        Again, from that I draw the logical conclusion your paper cannot calculate earth’s mean surface temperature of 288K w/o a starting point. Prove my conclusion wrong by showing you CAN do so for earth’s solid surface from measured data not just g/Cp & starting point. And that it works for venus, earth’s moon, mercury and mars.

        Basic text books using energy balance as shown by Dr. Spencer’s spreadsheet are the only game in town that CAN calculate earth’s mean solid surface atm. temperature to within 1K of measured value w/o starting value & using measured input. Works for venus, mars, mercury, and earth’s moon too since we can observe the solid surfaces. It will work for exploring the nature of certain exoplanets and Titan where we can observe a solid surface.

        D Cotton 10:17pm: “…if you have a temperature of 255K at 5Km…”

        Well, yeah a starting point works. Again, calculate mean surface T w/o simple g/Cp and a starting T value. You cannot. Dr. Spencer can and does. He showed his work in the spreadsheet.

        Now yeah, knowing the 255k from measured satellite data and 5km from radiosondes allows g/Cp to be useful since are supplied with a starting point, we already know that, your paper is not then useful. Doesn’t add any understanding past basic text books.

        That’s it for me unless you have something new. Tired of writing “Again…”.

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          D Cotton

          PS I should have explained that the supporting temperature (which I calculate from a pivoting altitude of 3.5Km rather than your 5Km) is to be expected to be lower than 288K, because it is basically the minimum temperature in calm conditions in the early pre-dawn hours. So something like 255 + (3.5 x 6.5) = ~278K is realistic, because the Sun adds temporary heat each day which may well make the maximum about 20 degrees warmer, and so the average about 10 degrees warmer, namely 288K.

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        D Cotton

        I have shown you an example of how calculations are done with Uranus. Now you show me how your spreadsheet would calculate that 320K temperature at the base of the Uranus atmosphere. Stuck, aren’t you?

        Earth is just as easy with my model. The starting point is the same as yours, based on at what temperature radiative balance exists with incident Solar radiation adjusted for albedo. So if we use a flat Earth model, we get 255K the same way as you do. However, since radiative flux is what we are really considering, and it varies with T^4, we don’t just pick the altitude where the actual temperature happens to match that 255K. Instead we pick the altitude where there is equal outward radiative flux above and below. Makes more sense doesn’t it? I admit my back-of-the-envelope calculation of 3.5Km could be a little inaccurate, but so too could be the 255K figure if emissivity was incorrectly determined. And so too could the estimate of the mean surface temperature be inaccurate. After all, you can’t really prove that the true mean world surface temperature is as high as 288K. Longer hours of cooler temperatures at night draw the real means more towards the minimum daily temperatures, yet they use just an average of the maximum and minimum I understand.

        All the surface warming in my model has been due to the gravity effect, allowing downward convection to do most of the supporting of surface temperatures. I don’t need any energy budget represented in a spreadsheet. That’s the important difference between the new paradigm and the old – one is all about radiation into the surface; the other is all about thermal energy getting there by non-radiative processes which establish warmer temperatures because gravity induces the required thermal gradient.

        So I’d be interested in your answer these questions, some of which have been asked before …

        (1) Would the surface temperature be higher or lower if the world had only 20% as much water vapour and no other GH gases?

        (2) How do you calculate the temperature at the base of the Uranus atmosphere using radiative (spreadsheet) models, when there is insignificant intra-atmospheric radiation down there and no surface?

        (3) You seem to think the only energy entering Earth’s surface comes from radiation. I am saying much of it comes from downward convection from regions of the atmosphere that have already absorbed radiation, such as I say is the only way to explain the Uranus temperatures. Do you think I’m right or wrong about the explanation which is based on the process described in the Second Law of Thermodynamics in which that law says that thermodynamic equilibrium will evolve spontaneously?

        (4) If you agree I am right in (3) then do you also agree that this gravitationally induced thermal gradient (virtually a direct corollary of the Second Law of Thermodynamics) is more than enough to explain all that 33 degrees of warming, without any radiative forcing, as I have just shown?

        (5) If you don’t agree, and you think the answer to (1) is that the surface would be cooler with less water vapour, then show me evidence of dry regions having cooler daily maximum and minimum temperatures than similar moist regions. (I remind you that my study in the Appendix found the opposite was the case in real world data.)

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          LtCusper

          D Cotton 12:45am: “I have shown you an example of how calculations are done with Uranus.”

          Nothing new, AGAIN! this is in every basic atm. physics text book; g/Cp gradient works approximately. You start at Uranus given a temperature at an altitude and simply use the rate of change g/Cp to compute a new temperature at a different altitude from an approx. rate of T change.

          In every case you start given an energy balanced temperature, you are not able to compute that starting point temperature from energy balance 1st principles but Dr. Spencer IS able to do so. AND shows his work.

          D Cotton 12:45pm: “…show me how your spreadsheet would calculate that 320K temperature at the base of the Uranus atmosphere. Stuck, aren’t you?”

          Well, yes but not for the reason you imagine. Just where is the base of Uranus atm. exactly? I mean the solid part not the wiki assumed base. Write a paper explaining THAT solid surface location properly and you may have something to show that is new. Then I will do the spreadsheet calculations adj. to Uranus orbit.

          D Cotton “… you can’t really prove that the true mean world surface temperature is as high as 288K.”

          Specialist experts tally up the earth’s thermometer readings, find their temporal and spatial mean T = ~288K give or take an anomaly each month. If you want to dispute their methods, write it up and go see the experts or DIY. A continuous tally during March 2000 to May 2004 was done with satellites; they matched surface ~288K pretty close.

          D Cotton: “All the surface warming in my model has been due to the gravity effect…”

          Not all, someone gives you a starting temperature, all you do is apply the well known gradient formula g/Cp which is approx. given simplifying approximations (g/Cp is off only ~20% surface to tropopause for earth.)

          D Cotton: “I don’t need any energy budget represented in a spreadsheet. That’s the important difference between the new paradigm and the old…”

          Right, you don’t need an energy budget b/c Dr. Spencer or someone else did the work for you to get the starting temperature to simply apply a gradient (DALR or moist).

          Answers:

          (1) Dr. Spencer’s spreadsheet will calculate your answer. I will est. it for you if you ask but you will learn more doing it on your own.

          (2) A contradiction you will have to resolve for me: “…temperature at the base of the Uranus atmosphere…no surface.” Hmmmm….

          (3) Don’t tell me what I think. Unforced systems evolve spontaneously according to 2nd thermo law, forced systems respond as they are forced. You are right in part for atm. “…energy entering earth’s surface..comes from downward convection”.

          (4) Only if you show me a calculation of earth’s near surface global mean temperature from “the above-mentioned parameters”. And oh my, not from an assumed or given starting T point and a gradient AGAIN!

          (5) There is a funny story about this in a text book published in Pennsylvania vs. one published in Wisconsin. I do not recall the details. The Wisconsin author drew the same conclusion as you do, that the summer air column over Wisconsin would be more humid than one over the Sahara. So the Pennsylvania author looked up meteorological data on the summer date the Wisconsin author published. The Sahara column turned out to contain way more moisture than the Wisconsin column. Conclusion: You can’t draw conclusions from a too small subset, gotta’ run the whole earth or prove your small set confidence limits.

          Jesse Ventura “Blain” in “Predator”: You are dug in like an Alabama tick. But it is fun and a progressive learning experience for me at least.

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            D Cotton

            You still miss the point because all you talk about is calculations, as in “all you do is apply the well known gradient formula g/Cp.” Yes, the gradient of the plot comes from that, reduced by up to about a third due to inter-molecular radiation, and the overall level of the plot (my “starting point” as you call it) is determined by the need for radiative balance. The quantification can be done with simple geometry, sure, but that is a simplistic approach that is approximate, because it is averaging temperature rather than radiative flux. But the important point is determining what happens if things like the level of water vapour or carbon dioxide increase or decrease.

            If the atmosphere had only one-third as much water vapour and absolutely no carbon dioxide or any other GH gases, would the mean surface temperature be warmer or cooler than it is?

            You will know that my answer is in Sections 4 to 9 and the Appendix of my paper.

            I am discussing the process of non-radiative transfer of thermal energy which is the same spontaneous evolving process in the Second Law. You have not explained how the energy gets down 350K from the 53K at TOA of Uranus to warm the (theoretical) base of the troposphere (which has no surface there) to 320K. That is just one point on the way down through nearly 20,000Km of atmosphere to the conjectured solid core thought to be about half the mass of Earth. There the temperature has built up to roughly 4,000K to 5,000K by some estimates, more by others.

            How does that energy physically get down there if you think there is any other explanation than the “heat creep” process I have described, which is in accord with the Second Law of Thermodynamics?

            I cannot see how you can adapt your radiation models to determine such temperatures when it is not radiation which is producing these temperatures.

            Neither can about 2,600W/m^2 of incident radiation reaching Venus be somehow magnified as it passes through the atmosphere and exit into the surface as the 16,100W/m^2 that would be required to heat the Venus surface to 730K. It simply doesn’t get heated that way by radiation alone. It is maintained at those temperatures by non-radiative processes, and it these temperatures cannot be explained by any other process within the laws of physics.

            Sorry, but I don’t buy your computations, because they work only with the First Law, completely ignoring the additional requirements of the Second Law, and completely ignoring the non-radiative processes which the Second Law also states “evolve spontaneously.”

            I await your answer to the questions in bold.

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              LtCusper

              D Cotton 8:27pm: “I await your answer to the questions in bold.”

              Better to just consult a basic atm. thermo and fundamentals of atm. radiation text book. Find therein all the answers you seek to improve on your paper’s ability to calculate near surface planetary global equilibrium temperatures from 1st principles & up to the level Dr. Spencer is able to explain for earth, mars, venus, earth’s moon.

              Where your paper cannot do it for any of them – at least progress past assuming a temperature and using simple g/Cp gradients that 1st course students learn before the 1st blue book exam.

              No need to wait for me as I’ve already laid out the correct answers to your questions in this thread – see after the word “Again” in my comments above. I might even do it “again” later. Especially if you ask questions as you should, so to seek the proper fundamental understanding.

              We are all just practicing science, haven’t perfected science yet. Questions are good, repeated questions show a lack of progress. Good professors pick up on that.

              D Cotton 9:06pm: “…the direct Solar radiation cannot raise Earth’s surface to a mean of 288K.”

              Right, radiative balance atm. physics is important. The text books & Dr. Spencer’s spreadsheet explain how this happens, your paper can not. If your paper does & I missed it, just lay it out here succinctly. So far you have not; yet there it is earth’s Tavg. = ~288K in the thermometer & satellite records.

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    intrepid_wanders

    Okay, I know you do not know me from Doug Cotton, but here is the situation.

    Brandon Shollenberger is dead-ending with SkS on very simple request (i.e. SkS parlance, his account possibly cancelled). Back ground here: http://rankexploits.com/musings/2013/the-saga-continues/

    While I know that the “The Conversation” is a well known site of “…saving us from “those” unknown perils…”, I have bounced in for a year or so, and never encountered a CLOSED comments. Especially after only 15 days.

    http://theconversation.com/its…..ning-14051
    Just work with the http://theconversation.com/

    The comments are not longer open, after 15 days?! I have found things on similar subject matter back to March (and further).

    http://theconversation.com/glo…..-now-12832

    I will request myself, but being a yankee and all that stuff, it might help being in country. If these “conversations” could be re-opened, I am sure they would shed some light on the 97%.

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    D Cotton

    To all:

    Dr Spencer’s models and spreadsheets, and all the IPCC models are based on the fallacious assumption that radiation from a colder atmosphere can actually transfer thermal energy to a warmer surface and keep on heating it and increasing its temperature. On Venus the implication is that the surface could be heated this way to 730K!

    Radiation from a cooler source can do nothing other than slow the rate of cooling of the surface which is itself by radiation. That’s less than half the total cooling, because more than half the cooling is by non-radiative processes which will actually accelerate if radiative cooling slows, and thus compensate somewhat. None of this compensating is in Spencer’s spreadsheets or IPCC’s simplistic models.

    Because such radiation from the cooler atmosphere can only slow radiative cooling of the surface, there needs to be another source of energy that raises the temperature before any slowing of cooling can make any difference. It would have to raise the mean surface temperature to 288K on Earth, or 730K on Venus, or 230K at the base of the (theoretical) Uranus troposphere, where there is no surface anyway.

    Now, the other source that is needed to raise the surface temperature in the first place will do so if and only if there is sufficient flux reaching the surface (as per Stefan-Boltzmann Law) and also the source of the radiation was hotter. Clearly, on Venus and Uranus direct Solar radiation is ruled out due to insufficient fluz, but it’s a bit of a close shave on Earth, where direct Solar radiation could raise the surface to 255K, but, unfortunately for the IPCC, Dr Spencer and all, the direct Solar radiation cannot raise Earth’s surface to a mean of 288K. And neither can the cold back radiation.

    Hence that only leaves the non-radiative process I have described operating as explained in Section 9 to support the efforts of the Sun and prevent us all freezing to death at night.

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      LtCusper

      D Cotton 9:06pm writes: “..where direct Solar radiation could raise the surface to 255K, but, unfortunately for the IPCC, Dr Spencer and all, the direct Solar radiation cannot raise Earth’s surface to a mean of 288K.”

      According to D Cotton: “Hence that only leaves the non-radiative process I have described operating as explained in Section 9….”

      So according to D Cotton the non-radiative process described in Sec. 9 is responsible in D Cotton’s paper to explain earth’s surface thermometer 288K over earth satellite 255K.

      I seek an explanation; so as D Cotton writes this IS explained in Section 9.

      Refer to Section 9 for explanation: “…the equation for the thermal gradient (derived in Section 6)…”

      Refer to Section 6: “..we can assume a purely adiabatic process…the quotient -g/Cp, this being the same as that in the Wikipedia derivation of the dry adiabatic lapse rate.”

      Wiki ref. given as [22]: “…dry adiabatic lapse rate…unsaturated air rising under adiabatic conditions.”

      Dictionary.com: “Adiabatic: 1. (of a thermodynamic process) taking place without loss or gain of heat.”

      D Cotton thus wrongly explains non-radiative atm. process taking place without gain of heat CAN raise global mean atm. near surface temperature 33K.

      What is really happening as I seek a fundamentally correct explanation by text books and Dr. Spencer spreadsheet is that an optical thin atm. having global emissivity measured at earth surface in the range 0.7 to 0.95 radiates (half to deep space, half to surface) to explain the thermometer 288K and the satellite 255K.

      Also, according to text books and Dr. Spencer spreadsheet, the optically thick & extremely hot venus atm. global emissivity near surface of 1.0 radiates (half to space, half toward surface) to explain the 730K and the 234K.

      D Cotton’s turn at bat. I expect the same questions and explanations unless D Cotton advances past the 1st blue book exam level in using just adiabatic g/Cp process in sec. 6&9. It is possible (but not probable in my estimation) as most thermo courses I experienced had 2 or 3 blue books and a final exam.

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        D Cotton

        I’m not talking about a “non adiabatic process” raising surface temperatures. I’m talking about gravity redistributing energy and the process in the Second Law then operating with a consequent supporting temperature at the base of the atmosphere. It’s time you really studied the paper because you indicate to me that you have absolutely no comprehension of this process described in standard physics textbooks etc. But read today’s new comment on the new Open thread, because I’m not coming back here. I will happily dismantle your pseudo physics piece by piece if you keep this up without demonstrating that you know what I’m talking about or that you can prove such wrong, even though it’s all built on standard physics which I’ve been studying and teaching for nearly 50 years. What’s your background?

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          LtCusper

          D Cotton 2:34pm: “What’s your background?”

          Solid. Esp. solid enough to detect double negatives in your: “I’m not talking about a “non adiabatic process” raising surface temperatures.”

          And eliminate your double negative to appropriately find the meaning: “I’m talking about a “adiabatic process” raising surface temperatures.”

          I’ve 7:23am clipped D Cotton’s words accurately then. I do not find this in standard physics textbooks on topic of atm. thermo and atm. radiation. If you do, as you write you do, please cite the text name, author, edition and page number.

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    D Cotton

    I’ve batted on the new open thread

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