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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Climate Money Paper




The nerds have the numbers on precious metals investments on the ASX



Another toothless review of the BOM?

In last week’s news we find — by golly — that the BOM are going to “rush” to set up an oversight panel that they were told to set up back in 2011 or 2012. Hey, it was going to take three years to set up the panel, but now they’re doing it in two! That’s what I call “action”.

So the BOM knows it’s in trouble, and they shift to Stage 2.  They’ve avoided the skeptical questions, the FOIA’s, and the request for explanations for as long as they possibly could. But now the mainstream media is involved, something has to change — because nothing is worse than playing out the questions and answers in an uncontrolled way in public. To pack away those contentious points, what better method than by appointing a committee, review panel, or some kind of “independent” assessment? The right committee can produce toothless recommendations, vague praise, and a weak slap on the wrist and it can take years to do it.

Thus and verily do Ministers sometimes palm off problems, and responsibility. All decision-making power seemingly goes to the “review” (unless it somehow produces an undesirable result). Should the review churn out the conclusion the [...]

The mysterious sudden jump in Melbourne temperatures in 1996 with an instrument change

Here’s a strange change. After 160 years of fairly constant maximum temperatures, the raw Melbourne records take a sudden step up by 0.7 0C in 1996. Coincidentally (or not) that is the same year that the automatic gauge was installed. The new electronic equipment is much more responsive to short peaks and dips compared to thermometers. Could the step up be due to the better resolution? It’s by no means definitive — these are yearly averages, not monthly, and it may be a real climate shift and not due to the equipment. The obvious question is whether this sort of jump occurs in other stations where AWS (automatic weather stations) were installed. That would have profound implications if it did, but surely it would have been noticed already? Melbourne is known for having “four seasons in one day”, so perhaps there is a small effect in most places, but the switchable peaks of of Melbourne summers make a larger difference. In any case, thanks to Tom Quirk (and Bill Johnston)  we have another puzzle in need of an answer. These AWS’s were installed all over Australia in the late nineties. If there was some effect, then there would [...]

Monckton in Australia (Brisbane on Tuesday)

Christopher Monckton

The wonderful Christopher Monckton is quietly venturing around Australia once again, this time at a more relaxed pace.

Hear Alan Jones interview Lord Monckton recently on 2GB.

As Alan Jones points out, Monckton has been thoroughly demonized, but as the evidence accrues, it’s clear he’s been on the right side the whole time.

Keep track of the Monckton Foundation page for other up and coming events that may occur.

For South East Queenslanders:– Christopher will be in the IRISH CLUB, Brisbane (again) next Tuesday 30th September. Details from Michael Darby; the Event Organiser:– [...]

Weekend Unthreaded

Wandering thoughts…

Google — the bird killing green rent seekers

This week the Chairman of Google, Eric Schmidt, called people who oppose green energy subsidies “liars”.

Mr. Schmidt said: “And the people who oppose it (climate change) are really hurting our children and our grandchildren and making the world a much worse place. And so we should not be aligned with such people—they’re just, they’re just literally lying.”

Meanwhile, Google uses mostly non-renewable fuel to power its operations, but has “pledged $1.5billion” to fund renewables. It has invested millions into solar panel plants that are “bird-fryers” — literally roasting birds in the sky. These investments mostly occur in states with renewable-mandates, would not survive without taxpayer funding, qualify for tax credits, and require infrastructure (like transmission lines) that electricity consumers or governments have to fund.

Wall St Journal

Google Kills Birds The mercenary motives behind Eric Schmidt’s appeal to green virtue.

“The real charlatans are businesses like Google that use climate change as a pretext for corporate welfare.”

… nearly all of Google’s solar and wind farms are located in states with renewable-energy mandates, which create opportunities for politically mediated profit-making. For instance, California requires that renewables make up a third of electricity by [...]

The hotter nights in Melbourne and some mysterious adjustments

Tom Quirk takes a close look at the long historic station of Melbourne. As we would expect, things have changed around the sensor since 1855 when records started.  Amazingly he finds the maximum trend in Melbourne was largely flat from 1855 – 1995. The  minimums shows a classic warming from 1945.

To find out how much of the warming in Melbourne may be due to the Urban Heat Island effect (UHI) we can compare the minima at the CBD station to one on the outskirts — and Laverton is 20 kilometers away. The site near the CBD is warming at 0.2C per decade faster than the site on the outskirts. It amounts to a whole degree warmer over 50 years, though the rate may be tailing off now. It’s hard to fit in more concrete or more skyscrapers than there already are.

Tom has a close look at the adjustments and finds plenty of questions but few answers. These adjustments are done as step changes, and Tom (and I) wonder why the gradual increase in concrete would warm Melbourne “step-wise” rather than as a slope change. Tom also wonders why the BOM say that one change is due to a [...]

“Mike’s trick” to hide the decline — still shocking

Jean S revisited “Black Tuesday” with a post on Climate Audit. Even though I’ve seen these graphs before. It is still so arresting:

(Click to enlarge) Graphs from a Richard Muller presentation

People can debate the finer details of “splicing” but ultimately the second graph is deceptive. Do tree rings work, or don’t they?

When it comes to “tricks”, this is not like a trick to get the photocopier to work. It’s a trick to hide something (see that famous quote below). We don’t need a committee report to tell us whether it’s OK. It’s not science.

Climate Audit has well written a minute by minute breakdown of the emails at the time. (It was Barry Woods suggestion to add the graphs but they finish up at the end of the post.)


Gullible activists bury their heads in the sand

I guess scientific debate is too hard for some people. While skeptics want to talk about the evidence, some people just want to put their heads in the sand.

This story tritely reminds us that a picture is worth a thousands words. Indeed! The original caption read “Townsville Salutes the Australian government for their achievements in combating climate change”.  But the scientific evidence is clear that there are more accurate captions, so I thought I’d help them — strictly in the spirit of satire of course.

Fully 99% of climate models didn’t predict global warming would slow. Even in hindsight, they still don’t know why it happened.

The organizers want the idea to spread:

 Mr Hirst said he hoped that the concept would take off and that others would set up their own shots.

“People seem to like the idea … I would love to see people do it on Bondi Beach.”

 Go for it, I say. Tweet this!


Click here for the story of the 28 million weather balloons, and how tricky the IPCC can be at ignoring them. There’s more on the missing Hot Spot here.

Perhaps we [...]

Who are the ideologues now? Klein doesn’t care if science is wrong. Kennedy wants to jail dissenters

Remember how skeptics are supposedly the right wing ideologues who deny the science and are driven by their desire for free markets? Projection anyone?

(Click to enlarge)

The Climate March in NY was another outpouring of innumerate frustration. Marc Morano went to the Climate March, despite being listed as the hate figure of the day and found no one was even bothering to hide the real aim, which was pro-socialist and anti-capitalist. Naomi Klein even admitted that the science is irrelevant, and she would be supporting all the same “solutions” even if the science was wrong.

During the panel discussion, Klein was asked: “Even if climate change issue did not exist, you would be calling for same structural changes. Klein responded:  ‘Yeah.’

Following the panel, Climate Depot asked Klein if she would support all the same climate “solutions” even if the science was wrong.

“Yes, I would still be for social justice even if there was not climate change. Yes, you caught me Marc,” Klein answered sarcastically as she abruptly ended the interview

Naomi Klein’s new book is titled “This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate”. The enemy is “Capitalism” — hence big-coal is a target and big-dependent-renewables are her friends. [...]

Antarctic Sea Ice record high — 600,000km2 more than previous record

Despite all the “missing heat” hiding somewhere in the oceans, the extent of the Antarctic Sea Ice today is at a record high of 16.8 million square kilometers. In the Southern Hemisphere the record is 600,000 square kilometers more than has ever been recorded by satellites which began tracking the sea-ice extent in 1979 when CO2 was 336ppm. Atmospheric carbon dioxide has risen 20% globally since then and current global sea ice extent is slightly above than the average from 1978 -2008. The previous largest extent was 16.22 million km2 in 2012. This may not be the peak this year. Watch the chart with me this week.

The Antarctic Sea Ice usually reaches its annual peak the week after the Spring Equinox. Though it may peak as late as October 9th, as it did last year.

(Click to see the whole graph)

Source: Cryosphere