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This is only 1 percent of a real mass extinction

Peter Brannen argues a real mass extinction doesn’t just wipe out 1% of species, it wipes out 90%.

It turns out humans are not quite as bad as a one-kilometer-deep lava layer covering an area as big as the US.

 Earth is not in the midst of a Sixth Mass Extinction

Humans have changed the ecosphere:

So things don’t look so good, no matter where we look. Yes, the victims in the animal world include scary apex predators that pose obvious threats to humans, like lions, whose numbers have dropped from 1 million at the time of Jesus to 450,000 in the 1940s to 20,000 today—a decline of 98 percent. But also included have been unexpected victims, like butterflies and moths, which have declined in abundance by 35 percent since the 1970s.

Is this a mini extinction?

…the only reason we know about mass extinctions in the first place is from the record of this incredibly abundant, durable, and diverse world of marine invertebrates, not the big, charismatic, and rare stuff like dinosaurs.“

So you can ask, ‘Okay, well, how many geographically widespread, abundant, durably skeletonized marine taxa have gone extinct thus far?’ And the answer is, pretty close to zero,” Erwin pointed out. In fact, of the best-assessed groups of modern animals—like stony corals, amphibians, birds and mammals—somewhere between 0 and 1 percent of species have gone extinct in recent human history. By comparison, the hellscape of End-Permian mass extinction claimed upwards of 90 percent of all species on earth.

When mass extinctions hit, they don’t just take out big charismatic megafauna, like elephants, or niche ecosystems, like cloud forests. They take out hardy and ubiquitous organisms as well—things like clams and plants and insects. This is incredibly hard to do. But once you go over the edge and flip into mass extinction mode, nothing is safe. Mass extinctions kill almost everything on the planet.

–The Atlantic

h/t GWPF

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This is only 1 percent of a real mass extinction, 9.8 out of 10 based on 89 ratings

86 comments to This is only 1 percent of a real mass extinction

  • #

    What’s most likely to become extinct as the consequence of ‘climate change’ is the scientific method.


    • #

      The scientific method has already become nearly extinct. However the call last year by the incoming President of the Royal Society to allow unhindered debate has, apparently, halted that extinction. Hence the recovery of the publication of valid sceptical papers by real scientists to counter the propagandists.


      • #
        Peter C

        However the call last year by the incoming President of the Royal Society to allow unhindered debate has, apparently, halted that distinction

        I think he was talking about GM crops. No change by the RS on climate change as far as I know.


    • #
      Leonard Lane

      Thanks CO2isnotevil. Science in interlinked and interdependent. the point I am trying to make is that when Cultural Marxists and the like are allowed to trivialize climate science–all science is at risk.


  • #

    Soooooo…… Trump is not going to drain the swamp?
    What I find so amazing is how much hysteria the news media puts out, and people buy it!


  • #
    Planning Engineer

    Environmental arguments get very shaky once you depart from the human perspective. From the point of view of our timeframes, ecosystems and extinctions are very important. But if you talk globally in a geological time frame what we might do to the planet is trivial.

    The K-T extinction 66 million years ago resulted in the extinction of almost all large vertebrates, most plankton and may tropical invertebrates. Roughly 3/4s of plant and animal species were lost. On the geological scale we only see a thin layer of sediment. The loss resulted in the flourishing of many other life forms and diversity again re-asserted itself. Except for the avian branch we lost dinosaurs but mammals were able to flourish. A short term disaster, long term it’s hard to argue a huge loss for the planet.

    Those upset for the planet, because of extinctions we may be causing treat the consequences as self evident. But such consequences should be better described and put into some sort of context.


    • #
      John Smith

      There appear to be two main time frames in Climatology.
      ‘Permanent’ and ’5 years.’
      “Climate Change is causing permanent drought.”
      “The Arctic will be ice free in 20xx.” (just add 5 years to current date)


      • #
        Rereke Whakaaro

        The Arctic has free ice now. You only have to go up there and help yourself.

        But I suggest that you avoid the ice that has a bear on it. They are well known for having no sense of humour.


  • #

    Mass cannot be extincted, except by conversion to energy.


  • #

    The tuatara and coelacanth too,
    Have survived, to name but a few,
    From a long list that thrive,
    Termed as fossils alive,
    Means that not all ‘extinctions’ were true.


  • #

    Only a Maths extinction could explain the complete breakdown in perspective.


    • #
      Greg Cavanagh

      I don’t think it’s mathematical incompetence, nor lack of scientific process, or even understanding of maths, physics, chemistry; I believe it is purely ideology driven science.

      They firmly believe the world is going to hell in a hand basket, and they’re going to research this lake/air/ice/rock and show it.

      They do NOT do the research and assess the results uncritically.


    • #
      Dave in the States

      Exactly. Alarmist seem to have trouble with numbers. They appear to not be able grasp what values are significant and what values are insignificant. They hear a figure like 36 gigatons and think that is a tremendously large value, and is when weighing most things, but 36 gigatons of co2 is hardly anything on a geological scale. They don’t seem to understand the significance of the ESC to co2 being logarithmic. The don’t seem to understand the insignificance of 3% of the annual co2 cycle budget. They don’t seem to have a grasp of + or – signs when constructing graphs (or maybe they do?). They don’t seem to understand the difference between co2 and co 1. They don’t seem to understand the significance between 100 trillion dollars vs the insignificance of a fraction of degree decrease in temperature. They don’t seem to grasp the significance of requiring 183 million wind turbines to replace fossil fuels. They don’t seem to understand the insignificance of 17% of nameplate energy production vs the significance of 90% of name plate energy production. They don’t seem to understand the significance of minor adjustment to the historical temperature records or maybe they do?…. and on ….and on…and on….


      • #

        I know this is a little off topic, but where Dave in the States mentions this, I was just a little curious, and I know there is a hint of sarcasm in what he said here: (my bolding here)

        They don’t seem to grasp the significance of requiring 183 million wind turbines to replace fossil fuels.

        There’s currently (around) 450,000MW Nameplate for wind power on the Planet, and for ease of the Maths, I’ll convert it to the next power of ten up the scale, so that’s 450GW.

        While the Capacity Factor (CF) of wind varies considerably, the current Worldwide average CF for wind is (around) 25%, and even here I’m being generous, because while the U.S. and Australia are running at around 30%, it’s barely 20% across Europe, and in China it’s only just 18%, so 25% makes the Maths a little easier, and it would be fairly close to the mark anyway.

        So that Nameplate of 450GW now becomes gives an actual generation close to 110GW of Nameplate.

        Got that?


        The current World total for coal fired power is just a tick over 4,000GW

        Not that wind will ever replace coal fired power anyway.

        Maths must be so confronting to greenies, eh!



        • #
          Dave in the States

          I was told the 183 million figure from a UK source. Perhaps that is just for the UK? Nevertheless, I don’t know if their is enough land mass in the British Isles to build that many?


      • #
        Rereke Whakaaro

        Significant digits are those that get the scary message across to the innumerate.

        Insignificant digits are only there to make the message even more scarier, because it has a longer number after the decimal point.


    • #
      Roy Hogue

      Maths extinction…

      It seems to be closer than we ever thought.

      Good pun though, Matty. I’m still chuckling. ;-)


  • #

    Dealing with Leftists when discussing climate change, they become strident and won’t listen to reason…..

    Its what the Bible calls an unteachable spirit.


    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      Oh, I thought an “unteachable spirit” was any whisky that wasn’t “Teachers”.


  • #

    I believe that the green species is not far away from extinction.


  • #

    I wonder whether Arthur4 C Clarke realized that the science fiction writers of the 21st century would be climate scientists?


    • #
      David Maddison

      Arthur C Clarke had this to say about “climate change”.

      Secondly, I would like to see us kick our current addiction to oil, and adopt clean energy sources. For over a decade, I’ve been monitoring various new energy experiments, but they have yet to produce commercial scale results. Climate change has now added a new sense of urgency. Our civilisation depends on energy, but we can’t allow oil and coal to slowly bake our planet…



      • #
        Peter C

        I was a fan of Aurthur C Clarke. I had not heard of the Green house theory back then but when I did learn about it, it seemed very plausible and I agreed with it.

        I have since changed my mind!


  • #

    This morning we are dealing with wind extinction. Wind is contributing a mere 270 MW from 4400 MW nameplate capacity towards a total demand of 23,000 MW in the whole AEMO grid. We need all politicians to blow harder.
    SA will be the first state to be declared extinct as it is so dependent on wind. This morning there is only 50 MW of wind in the state, gas is providing 830 MW, while Vic is trying to assist the mendicant state with 640 MW of exports. Current spot wholesale price in SA is 20 cents/KWhr.

    I wonder whether SA Premier Jay Weatherill is feeling ill this morning? Will he become extinct at the next SA election in March 2018?


    • #
      Graeme No.3


      Will Jay Weatherill become extinct at the next SA election in March 2018? One would hope so, but the Opposition have snatched defeat from the jaws of victory before.


    • #

      Whether Weatherill is ill is interesting but how a State government can beggar their own state is beyond logic.

      Some premiers build power stations, roads, infrastructure, hospitals and education and health levels. Weatherill has been a disaster for his state and to everyone’s amazement, continues to justify his his destruction of electricity generation in South Australia. Energy is the foundation of modern life and to save someone else’s environment oveseas somewhere, he has intentionally and deliberately wreaked havoc on his own constituency. People build statues to heroes. Weatherill deserves an anonymous anemometer on an obscure obelisk in Noriootpa with the inscription, Ill Weather happened.


    • #
      Gary in Erko

      Half the wind turbines need to be rewired in reverse. Turn them into propeller fans to spin Earth faster, to generate more wind.


      • #

        Gary, they already do that (it is said to be used to stop the bearings failing too soon) but they don’t all point in the same direction so it doesn’t work.


  • #

    Good on the Atlantic for avoiding the cheap trickery of modern “science communication”.

    Our little epoch is just a skinny warm blip in the Late Quaternary. We’re in the Ice Age but getting a bit lucky, that’s all.

    I’m not saying we should tear the place up while we can, but when those glaciers advance again you won’t worry if your skis have been sustainably harvested. Judging by the carry-on about global cooling as recently as forty years back I’d say just a minor chilling will have the whinge levels just as high as now. 1700 style conditions will have ‘em howling and the mattress-moisteners will be looking to blame. (They’ve already got the ocean circulation explanation ready. It’s just a matter of making the notion of “stable climate” a bit less laughable.)

    Just be grateful for the odd interglacial, I say. Things could get worse, like when you thought Abbott was bad.


  • #

    What an interesting guy Doug Erwin appears to be.
    I was particularly struck by his analogy of mass extinction to power grid collapse.
    Yes power grid failure is a big problem with large extended grids that traverse many kilometers and have many generator feed-in points, and many local load distribution points along its way. The big problem with such systems is swift identification of anomalous grid behaviors and implementing the correct remedial action. That is to say disconnect the fault from the grid as close to fault as possible. A small failing can easily cascade across a grid destructively if incorrect fault identification or remedial action is taken, hence his example of the US blackout in 2003. Compromise either part of this failure sensing/correcting control system and destructive collapse of the entire network can swiftly occur.

    A simple example might be along the lines of the sun radiates a higher than usual amount of very energetic particles for an extended time (a few months). These particles and their attendant nuclear radiation penetrate the atmosphere and cause some minor genetic changes in some particularly prevalent viruses. These viruses in turn infect many bacteria that fix nitrogen, changing them so that their enzymes are much less efficient at fixing nitrogen. Plant life on land, waterways and in the oceans are badly affected. However compounding this event is the rise in volcanic activity…

    A few million years later, and a geologist is looking at the fossils in his lab and wondering why so many animals all died at once. He hears the end of the radio news informing him that this current solar activity is the longest duration to have happened since records have been kept…
    “It must have been the volcanoes” he surmises.


  • #
    Roy Hogue

    I must have missed the memo about this when it was circulated so I’m blissfully unaware of the crisis.

    Problem solved.


  • #

    Yes, the present extinction is very different to many previous ones, because in this case just one dominant predator is responsible-humans.

    This means things like other medium to large mammals (for food and land), and other predators which compete for livestock and land, are largely the ones going extinct. (I recently went to Africa and observed lions and cheetahs hunting just a few hundred metres from a village; who do you think wins this contest for safe access, e.g. with mothers wanting to protect their young?). Some larger marine species are also in decline. There is of course many more subtleties, such as land clearing and farming which also eradicates habitat and species, but with volcanic eruptions, asteroids, and massive natural climate changes, what goes extinct is very much more spread across the food chain.

    Also note that one cannot extrapolate extinction rates on islands to continents, which many biologists do, due to non-linear relationships with extinction factors between islands and larger land areas. A lot of species continental extinction models are based on linear assumptions. (Non linear relationships are where alot of career-academics go astray, because its simply easier to calculate, and less messy).


  • #

    11 Jun: RadioTimesUK: Louis Theroux meets David Attenborough to talk global warming, animal kinship and mortality
    The beast of the broadcasting jungle also reveals his biggest regret – and his chocolate addiction

    THEROUX: You talk in this new series about pizzly bears – which are a cross between a polar and a grizzly. Is it that the grizzlies are coming north because it’s warmer or the polar bears are coming south because they’ve got no food?


    THEROUX: So is it likely that polar bears will become extinct in the wild?

    ATTENBOROUGH: Yes, except that while there may be no more pure white bears, they haven’t gone extinct. Their genes are still there, and they’re brown bears now – they’ve left descendants. We tend to catalogue the natural world and say, “OK, that’s a horse and that’s a zebra and that’s a polar bear, that’s a brown bear.” But that’s our classification, and a lot of these lines are fuzzy. And the line between a brown bear and a white bear is fuzzy, and the two interact.

    When we make films and say the polar bear is doomed, people think how terrible that is. And it is terrible in the sense of a particular individual, but then all individuals die, and the species itself is changing. And will change. Evolution is proceeding in the animal kingdom just the way it always did.

    THEROUX: It is changing. So I wonder how worried are you about global warming?

    ATTENBOROUGH: We should be very, very worried about it. And it’s not just one species, it’s whole ecosystems that are going west. If you just look at the oceans, an awful lot of changes are taking place. Coral reefs are disappearing and about half the world’s fish, at some stage or another, live or depend on the coral reef. I’m not saying that the oceans are going to become barren overnight, but humanity is becoming more and more dependent upon the seas for food. The land is being scorched, deserts are spreading, and the seas are warming – well, all those factors cause great changes in our fortunes, and will do.

    THEROUX: What do you see as the biggest problem we face as caretakers of the planet?

    ATTENBOROUGH: Well, population, of course, lies at the base of a lot of our problems…ETC


    • #
      Peter C

      Attenborough is well beyond learning anything new now. But for others who might still be worrying about Malthus and the over abundance of people on our planet you might take some comfort from this article.

      World population should peak by the end of the current century. It could occur earlier if people’s living standards can be raised sufficiently and sooner.


    • #

      I wonder what happened to the indecent humping between grizzlies and polies after the marked Arctic ice increase in the 1960s. And after the Napoleonic thaw for that matter. The return of ice post 1920s must have really spoiled some parties. You know, once you’ve tried white…

      So you get hybrids in zoos and in the wild? Not many specimens were collected in past centuries, when people were more intent on just eating or skinning bears, but that doesn’t mean hybrid breeding is new practice. Reporting and distorting natural occurrences on such a massive is certainly new practice. (Actually, wasn’t there a likely hybrid specimen collected in the 1860s?)

      No, our climate did not begin in 1980. They just keep trying to tell you it did.

      By the way, isn’t it time for Theroux to do a patronising review of climate skeptics? We can be paraded for the luvvie media like Westboro church members, generating lotsa giggles and sniggers for the clever set in the viewing period after the Project and before Lateline.


  • #


    16 Jun: Breitbart: MARKO, SOON, ET AL: To Put America First Is to Put Our Planet’s Climate First
    The article below was contributed by Istvan Marko, J. Scott Armstrong, William M. Briggs, Kesten Green, Hermann Harde, David R. Legates, Christopher Monckton of Brenchley, and Willie Soon.


    • #

      Thanks Pat,
      A good read, and a neat summary. Also good to see Lord Monkton is still active.
      Dave B


  • #
    Mark M

    Bizarre new deep-sea creatures discovered off Australian coast

    Apparently they didn’t get the 97% Doomsday Global Warming extinction memo …


    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      If they are “just discovered”, how come the writer of the article could name them?


  • #

    read all:

    17 Jun: Spectator UK: The great myth of the global warming ‘pause’
    While sceptics obsess over a global-warming hiatus, the sea gets steadily hotter
    by Phillip Williamson
    (Dr Williamson works at the University of East Anglia as a science coordinator for the Natural Environment Research Council)
    Readers of The Spectator will be familiar with the argument that climate change, like Britpop, ended in 1998. Raised on a diet of Matt Ridley and James Delingpole, you may have convinced yourself that climate scientists, for their own selfish reasons, continue to peddle a theory that is unsupported by real-world evidence.

    You may also have picked up the idea that the ‘green blob’, as it has been called in these pages, is somehow suppressing the news that global warming is a dead parrot. That was the case made by Dr David Whitehouse, science editor of Lord Lawson’s Global Warming Policy Forum in a Spectator blog in February last year. He accused the world’s media of ignoring a paper in Nature Climate Change which concluded that the rise in global surface temperature had stalled, contrary to the narrative of man-made climate change. In contrast, an earlier paper by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in Science magazine, which questioned the existence of that hiatus, had been given huge coverage.

    Those of us who work in climate research do not, of course, ignore evidence. A study published in Nature Climate Change does not go unnoticed. But the particular paper to which Whitehouse referred does not counter the reality of man-made change. By the time he wrote his piece, the hiatus in global air temperatures had already come to a blistering halt. The years 2014, 2015 and 2016 were the three hottest years on record — an unprecedented run.

    But this is only part of the story. Anyone who considers climate change to be all about air temperatures at the Earth’s land surface misses something rather important. The evidence is not just blowing in the wind; it is 500 fathoms deep…
    It is not easy to measure how much extra heat has entered the ocean as a result of human influences on the climate…BLAH BLAH

    The apparent slowdown in global temperature rise in the early years of this century was nothing more than the Earth’s climate system expressing its natural variability. Like the weather in London, the Earth’s climate is fickle: what we see in the climate from year to year is much like what we see in the weather from day to day, or week to week. The years between 1998 and 2013 were the equivalent of a spell of cool weather following a heatwave. Yet all the while, taking air and ocean heat content combined, the Earth was warming…BLAH BLAH


    • #
      Graeme No.3

      I have this vision of the world in the next ice age.
      Mrs. Ugg says to Mr. Ugg “look the oceans have overturned and all that warmed deep sea water is on the surface. It must be a whole 0.01℃ warmer today – I think I will take my fur coat off”. Mr. Ugg “silly old moo”.


    • #

      Anyone who uses the term “on record” and does not immediately refer to the length and nature of the record is already shown to be dodgy, relying on the emotional charge of the words and showing no interest in their substance. Warmies do that a lot.

      I could not be bothered with whether there is a way of determining global temp and whether that temp has been on the rise. What should we expect in a slow two horse race? We can only warm or cool. Just be glad the cooling is not at culture-crushing levels such as occurred at the end of the Old Kingdom and a thousand years later at the Bronze Age decline. (Even that chill a mere 300 years ago would make for some real concern, especially if you were actually relying on solar panels at 50+ degrees north, as opposed to what Germany only pretends to do.)

      As for hoping to measure the ocean’s overall temp at great depth and hoping even more forlornly to have a point of comparison with past measurements which don’t exist…Here Dr Williams shows his mystical side. You can’t argue with mystics.

      Btw, thank you for all these links and updates, Pat.


  • #

    16 Jun: WileyOnline: Climate change and temperature-linked hatchling mortality at a globally important sea turtle nesting site
    The study of temperature-dependent sex determination (TSD) in vertebrates has attracted major scientific interest. Recently, concerns for species with TSD in a warming world have increased because imbalanced sex ratios could potentially threaten population viability…
    Using 6603 days of sand temperature data recorded across 6 years at a globally important loggerhead sea turtle rookery—the Cape Verde Islands—we show the effects of warming incubation temperatures on the survival of hatchlings in nests. Incorporating published data (n = 110 data points for three species across 12 sites globally), we show the generality of relationships between hatchling mortality and incubation temperature and hence the broad applicability of our findings to sea turtles in general. We use a mechanistic approach supplemented by empirical data to consider the linked effects of warming temperatures on hatchling output and on sex ratios for these species that exhibit TSD.

    Our results show that higher temperatures increase the natural growth rate of the population as more females are produced. As a result, we project that numbers of nests at this globally important site will increase by approximately 30% by the year 2100. However, as incubation temperatures near lethal levels, the natural growth rate of the population decreases and the long-term survival of this turtle population is threatened…ETC;jsessionid=6B62EDAE712E3C5B74024487FF28595D.f04t04


  • #

    It is incredible how backyard ecologists start to blame humans for all the awful things on planet earth. Underlying this is the idea that the world without humans is perfect, that the snakes are just right, the right proportion are deadly and the spiders are dandy. Those great philosophers Monty Python have a few things to say about our perfect world, perfect weather and nasty humans who interfere.

    To the tune of All things Bright and Beautiful..

    All things dull and ugly,
    All creatures short and squat,
    All things rude and nasty,
    The Lord God made the lot.

    Each little snake that poisons,
    Each little wasp that stings,
    He made their brutish venom.
    He made their horrid wings.

    All things sick and cancerous,
    All evil great and small,
    All things foul and dangerous,
    The Lord God made them all.

    Each nasty little hornet,
    Each beastly little squid,
    Who made the spikey urchin?
    Who made the sharks? He did!

    All things scabbed and ulcerous,
    All pox both great and small,
    Putrid, foul and gangrenous,
    The Lord God made them all.


    As Tony Abbott said, Climate Change is socialism masquerading as environmentalism, but how many people who think the planet is Eden, the Polar Bears are really happy and the graceful gazelles would rather be eaten by lions? A nice virus like Ebola has the capacity to exterminate humans overnight. That would make some people happy, or would they survive to enjoy their perfect world?


    • #

      Indeed, the lefties are all into greenism. Strange, that the so-called ‘progressives’ are actually hyper-conservative. They don’t want the world to change–At All! Extinctions have happened since there was life on the planet, but the ‘progressives’ want no more of them. The climate has always changed, but the ‘progressives’ want to tax us to starvation in a futile attempt at stopping it. I don’t think anyone here believes that we don’t have man made environmental problems or that we should be doing a better job of being good stewards of the earth, but the horror of the ‘progressives’ in the face of even naturally occurring change is still quite amusing.


  • #

    “It turns out humans are not quite as bad as a one-kilometer-deep lava layer covering an area as big as the US.”

    We’ll just have to try harder.


  • #
    Rod McLaughlin

    A new site claiming to debunk climate change denial


    • #

      “Feedback” as in unwanted acoustic interference.


    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      Somebody has populated a web site with a telephone directory of academics, and fellow travellers, involved in matters relating to climate. A few familiar names appear, such as:

      Wolfgang Cramer
      Peter Thorne
      Peter Gleick
      Richard Tol
      Kevin Trenberth

      The home page looks a lot like the British Daily Mail, or Daily Mirror, and probably has as much veracity.


  • #

    Canberra…the shape of the country to come….
    ( link seems to get around pay wall.)

    Everyone is talking about the price of energy. A few weeks ago I received a pamphlet from the ACT government on energy-­saving tips. For winter it featured a picture of a family all in overcoats and beanies, huddled under an electric blanket. For summer it had helpful advice like open a window at night. If you want to see the clean, green energy future, there is no need to travel to South Australia. Come to the nation’s capital.

    Not only does the ACT have the highest rates and taxes in the country but it also has the highest energy prices. Next month the price of electricity for the average Canberra household is to go up by more than $300 a year. This is a glimpse of an Australia-wide future. Nevertheless, our Greens-Labor left ACT government, which owns energy supplier ACTEW, continues to spruik its 100 per cent renewable target for 2020. Of course the ACT doesn’t produce much electricity, unless you count the eyesore wind farms near Bungendore, a solar farm that provides convenient photographic backdrops for progressive politicians or the vast number of solar panels festooning household roofs that operate on exceptionably generous subsidies.

    The citizens of Canberra console themselves that they live in Australia’s cleanest, greenest, least-­polluting city, although common sense is in as much short supply as the electricity.

    The average Australian consumer is confused. The wholesale price of electricity has doubled in the past 12 months. Yet a year ago the Australian Energy Market Operator was predicting a fall in electricity prices. This was based on the expectation of maintaining baseload coal fire-generated electricity, increasing renewable ­energy output and abundant cheap gas — exactly as predicted for the ACT with its abundant rooftop solar, cheap gas for heating that households are encouraged to use and coal-fired power imported from NSW and Victoria.

    The ACT is essentially a microcosm of the national market and expectations. Now its power authorities are handing out pamphlets encouraging people to wear coats and hats inside while huddled under electric blankets in one of the nation’s coldest capitals.

    rest at article


  • #
    • #
      Environment Skeptic

      It is not an “extinction” that we are in the midst of, it is a holocaust.
      If a tiger is in a cage and there is a female tiger in another country then it is deemed tigers are not extinct.
      If there is a sighting of a life form thought to have been extinct, then that one single sighting is proof that the particular life form concerned is not extinct.
      If billions of hectares of native forest is gassed using pesticide and herbicide and one hectare remains, then native forest on earth is deemed to still exist and therefore no extinction event concerning forests are noted because there is still one hectare of forest left.

      I agree we are not in the midst of a sixth mass extinction if we still have test tubes containing genetic material of a Tasmanian Tiger and so on… Lucky that. In saying that, it is difficult to ignore the holocaust on a relentless incremental level…. completely wiping out ecosystems …..only to be replaced by monoclonal genetically modified life for the purpose of growing food, or building resources, and so on….. One could argue that both a holocaust and extinction achieve the same end even though the holocaust is performed incrementally.


  • #

    Having been interested in science since I was a teenager and having spent a good deal of my working life as a grain farmer often in close contact with many scientists particularly those from the agricultural disciplines, I never thought I would ever see let alone agree with a comment on Paul Homewood’s . A LOT OF PEOPLE KNOW THAT blog.

    This sad but telling comment comes from the commenter “Dung” in Homewood’s Grenfell Tower Inferno post;

    June 15, 2017 7:48 pm;

    Science in general can not be trusted right now to act in the interest of anyone other than the scientist.

    There is a step change in society because of this but nobody is responding to it.[ yet! ]


  • #

    17 Jun: Townhall: Paul Driessen: Advancing Scientific Integrity on Bees
    A steady stream of misinformation has fueled misplaced public anxiety about bees. Being on the “right” side must therefore begin with recognizing that honeybee populations are actually increasing, as the decline in managed honeybee colonies reversed in recent years…READ ALL


  • #

    ROM didn’t post Homewood’s link, so here it is:

    check the comments on Homewood’s thread…there are plenty of further links about the cladding, which has allegedly been involved in many a fire, from several in Dubai, to the Lacrosse apartment building in Melbourne in 2014:

    15 Jun: ABC: Margaret Paul: London tower fire: Cladding used in Grenfell renovations similar to 2014 Docklands fire
    A fire at the high-rise Lacrosse building in Melbourne’s Docklands in November 2014 caused more than $2 million worth of damage and 500 people were evacuated, although none were hurt…
    A review by the Metropolitan Fire Brigade (MFB) found the building’s cladding was not compliant with combustibility requirements, and the Buildings Appeal Board ordered the cladding be removed from Lacrosse in January 2017.

    Victoria’s Planning Minister Richard Wynne said it had not yet been removed because its body corporation and builders were still negotiating a solution…
    Senator Xenophon is on a Senate committee examining the issue of non-compliant cladding, and said work was needed to ensure a similar tragedy didn’t happen in Australia…

    But the president of the Builders’ Collective of Australia, Phil Dwyer, said that does not go far enough.
    He said buildings with non-compliant cladding need to be urgently retro-fitted.
    “It’s all very well for a senator to say, ‘let’s have an audit, let’s do something about it’, but if there is a risk of loss of life and something we need to be proactive not reactive,” he told RN Breakfast.
    The Senate committee is due to hand down its final report in ***October, 2017.


  • #

    btw Homewood links to a UK Telegraph article which includes:

    Dr Jim Glockling, Technical Director of the Fire Protection Association, said that they had been lobbying the Government to review the safety of combustible materials used on the outside of buildings since 2014…
    Alongside the cosmetic appeal of cladding, it is used as an insulation to make buildings more sustainable to meet green energy requirements…
    “It could be that this is the quest for sustainability trumping other concerns,” Dr Glockling warned…


    and Phillip Bratby comments:

    “No doubt the BBC (Harrabin) will tell us if this was the result of green policies”

    I will return to Harrabin.

    Updated 16 Jun: UK Sun: ‘LIT UP LIKE MATCHSTICKs’ Grenfell Tower cladding ‘linked to horror blazes at high-rise blocks around the world’ turned tower into a tomb — as boss who oversaw £8.6m revamp admits he ‘doesn’t even know what it’s clad in’
    Doomed block in West London was allegedly covered with ACM cassette rainscreen cladding filled with foam insulation
    By Jack Royston, Chris Pollard, Neil Syson, Shaun Wooller and Danny Collins
    (BLUE BOX) Danger Across UK
    SIMILAR cladding to that used at Grenfell Tower has been fitted to high-rise blocks across Britain and the rest of the world.
    Numerous schemes have made use of the cheap insulation to get ***green energy ticks next to developments…

    Arnold Tarling, 55, of the Association of Specialist Fire Protection, said: “This was an accident waiting to happen…
    “Meanwhile, crews can’t tackle the fire effectively because their water just bounces off the rain covers.
    “The cladding looks lovely, it’s cheap, complies with regulations and gives the building a high environmental rating. But it’s a silent killer…

    When six people died in a 2009 fire at Lakanal House, a 14-storey block in Camberwell, South East London, exterior cladding panels ignited in four-and-a-half minutes.
    Southwark Council was fined £570,000 for fire safety failings in February — but astonishingly not for the cladding…

    There were further questions last night over the possibility that fireproof insulation, removed to replace old pipes in the Grenfell refurb, was not put back.
    If it wasn’t, that would have created channels of air allowing the flames to rapidly spread inside the building.
    A surveyor involved with the project refused to comment last night…

    more to come.


  • #

    Daily Mail asked a ***relevant question in its headline:

    PressReader: 16 Jun: Daily Mail: Three Lethal Questions
    ***Were green targets to blame for fire tragedy?
    Why were the families told to stay in their flats?
    How many more tinder-box towers are there?
    by Chris Greenwood, Sam Greenhill & Vanessa Allen

    that was a step too far for the CAGW gatekeepers, incl ex-Guardian writer, Leo Hickman, now with CarbonBrief, who singles out DM for a vicious attack, while ignoring the comments of “experts” like Glockling and Tarling.
    yet Hickman can only conclude: “green targets” are far from being the ***“key” driving force:

    16 Jun: CarbonBrief: Leo Hickman: Factcheck: Grenfell Tower fire and the Daily Mail’s ‘green targets’ claim
    On page eight is a full-page commentary from Ross Clark, sitting under the headline question: “So did an obsession with green targets lead to inferno?”
    Clark, who has published various climate sceptic articles and written a book attacking regulations he believes to be “strangling” the UK, begins the article…ETC

    So, to conclude, “green targets” are far from being the ***“key” driving force behind refurbishing public housing stock. Reducing fuel poverty as well as improving the personal comfort and health of residents are also key motivations, as the planning documents cited above clearly state…

    AncientWrench: An interesting exercise in diversion. It starts out addressing why flammable cladding was chosen, but the conclusion addresses only the motivations for refurbishing public housing stock. This “factcheck” hinges on semantics to shout down the Climate Change heresy of the Daily Mail and thus dismiss legitimate questions of cladding selection, sprinkler omission and emergency response. Shameless greenwashing…

    Andrew Warren: Thank you for publishing this genuinely informative piece, which reveals that yet again the Daily Mail can be found distorting facts, as well as inventing quotations, in order to pursue its strange anti environment prejudices.
    Previously the broadcast media has been all too inclined to follow the Mail line on far too many stories.
    ***So it was great to hear ***Roger Harrabin on the BBC Radio 4 8.00 news this morning providing a far more accurate synopsis.
    I hope that Carbon Brief will keep monitoring whether others fall for the Mail’s bastardised versions of the truth.


    16 Jun: BBC: London fire: Six questions for the investigation
    Cladding can create cavities which in some cases can cause a chimney effect, drawing flames up the cavity if there are no fire barriers…
    Rydon Construction, which carried out the refurbishment of the 24-storey tower, said it had delivered a “number of improvements” to community facilities and energy efficiency to the building.
    “Externally, rain screen cladding, curtain wall facade and replacement windows were fitted, improving thermal insulation and modernising the exterior of the building,” it said…
    The cladding requested for the refurbishment had a metal outer coating and an expanded foam interior.
    It had a polyethylene – or plastic – core instead of an ***even more fireproof alternative, BBC Newsnight understands.
    However, experts told the programme that cladding with a mineral core is considered to be less flammable.
    The Times reported that particular type of cladding used on Grenfell Tower is banned in the US on buildings taller than 40ft (12m) – for fire safety reasons.
    It says the manufacturer makes two fire-resistant alternatives, but they are more expensive.
    The paper calculates the difference in cost at Grenfell Tower would have amounted to less than £5,000 for the entire building…

    Were green targets to blame?
    By Roger Harrabin, environment analyst
    Cladding can be used to improve thermal insulation and energy efficiency within buildings.
    Some commentators are now asking whether green energy targets are to blame for Grenfell Tower fire.
    But campaigners for warm homes say the insulation policy is right – it’s the implementation that’s wrong.
    ***That’s because insulation has transformed the lives of hundreds of thousands of people in cold damp tower blocks.
    ***Comfort has improved, health is better, bills are slashed. Carbon emissions are down.
    ***In fact insulation needs to be massively extended as the government strives to reduce fuel poverty and curb carbon emissions.
    But engineers will need to use insulation that’s safe for tower blocks – and then prove to sceptical tenants that it is safe…

    The Fire Protection Association (FPA), the UK’s national fire safety organisation, says that when properly fitted – and with its polyethylene insulation expertly encapsulated – cladding should resist fire.
    In Dubai, recent high-rise building fires, including at the 79-storey Torch tower in 2015, spread because of cladding, according to fire engineering consultancy Tenable Dubai.
    Ray Bailey, managing director at Harley Facades Limited, which installed the cladding, has said: “At this time, we are not aware of any link between the fire and the exterior cladding to the tower.”
    ???Rydon said its work met “all required building regulations, as well as fire regulation and health & safety standards”…

    ???Harrabin/BBC couldn’t even report the following from the Telegraph article in Homewood’s thread!

    Further questions were raised yesterday Rydon Construction, the company contracted to carry out £10million refurbishment which was completed in March last year, appeared to change their statement about the tragedy.
    Rydon released a statement saying it met all “fire regulation and health and safety standards” during the refurbishment in 2016.
    However a later statement omitted this line and simply said the company had “met all required building regulations.”…

    the Grenfell Tower tragedy is truly awful, with people still missing, presumed dead, but it is surely time to sort out the cladding issue once and for all, so there are no more deaths in the future.


  • #

    External flammable materials in buildings? Just about every pre 1960s house in Queensland was built out of wood. They go up like a torch. Are they to be all retrofitted?


    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      I think you will find that the wooden framing and exterior weather-board’s, used in the construction and cladding of houses in Australia and New Zealand, are required to have been treated with chemicals to a) inhibit boring insects, and b) act as a fire retardant.


  • #

    One little wooden cottage in Marysville was one of the very few buildings to survive the 2009 firestorm. It had fairly recently been repainted.


  • #
    Owen Morgan

    We aren’t going to cause a mass extinction, but we are the only species ever to have existed that may possess the skills to mitigate, to a degree, the effects of such an event. Other species, given the chance, may adapt, evolve, but we alone can see what’s coming.

    Unless we are Michael Mann, or anyone else from the Climategate cabal.


  • #

    Good news for North America. They can be great fishing in the North Pacific and the Atlantic.
    Currently there is a strong cooling of the South Atlantic.


  • #
    Harry Twinotter

    I think you are ignoring the rate of species extinction in such a short period of time. Most of the Great Extinctions took many tens of thousands of years to happen, if not longer.


    • #
      Graeme No.3

      OK. Come back in ten thousand years.


      • #
        Harry Twinotter


        “OK. Come back in ten thousand years.”

        At the current extinction rates we won’t have to wait that long.


    • #
      Owen Morgan

      Well, what you seem to be saying is that you believe there is a “mass extinction” underway, but you can’t actually produce any evidence for that. Jesus… Even the Warmalists promise results in eighty-three years’ time. You want “many tens of thousands”?

      What kind of evidence can you provide, right now, to justify the notion of an on-going “mass extinction”?


      • #
        Harry Twinotter


        I am not saying there is a mass extinction going on. But there is an extinction going on, I will let you do your own projections based on the current extinction rate relative to the expected background rate.

        My comment is pointing out the omissions of fact in the Jo Nova article. It’s a poor article.