JoNova

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


Handbooks

The Skeptics Handbook

Think it has been debunked? See here.

The Skeptics Handbook II

Climate Money Paper


Advertising

micropace


GoldNerds

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



Archives

Books

Spent $1.5 billion on an interconnector to get a tiny cut in obscenely inflated electricity bills!

What costs $1,500m, makes no electricity, but “saves money”?

South Australia has used federal subsidies to build more wind power than it can use. They’ve spent half a billion already on diesel powered jet engines and a  battery that can power the state for “minutes”. For 139 hours last year the state produced so much wind power it supplied 100% of the states electricity needs and then some, and the problem of excess electricity is only getting worse as wind generation keeps increasing and solar PV uptake is rampant.

When government rules and regs have created an inefficient, expensive problem, what do we do? More of it. A new report suggests that South Australia needs a direct transmission line to NSW which will cost $1.5b. We could spend that on a reliable generator instead, or get the government out of the way and let the private sector do it for us, but instead we need to pay for another transmission line to connect up different zones-of-subsidy-rent seekers and hope we get $30 off the bill? It’s a savings in the statistic margin of error…

South Australia didn’t even have an interconnector til 1990. Now with decentralized and renewable power they [...]

A shortage of bottled pollution means Brits face beer, coke, bacon shortage

This is serious. The World Cup cometh, and the United Kingdom is running out of beer.

The UK emits over one million tons of CO2 each day but bottles of flood-drought-n-coral-killing CO2 are in short supply.

Trade journal Gas World, which first revealed there was a problem last week, said it was the “worst supply situation to hit the European carbon dioxide business in decades”.

Carbon capture is the way of the future, which is a shame. If it worked now, people wouldn’t be running out of beer, bacon, coke and even crumpets.

We spend billions to take pollution out of the sky and stuff it into deep holes.  Then we pay people to generate the same pollution and put it in our food. Someone, join the dots. Cut out the middle man and move Heineken next to Drax!

[...]

Old neglected wind turbines — ticking 100 ton bombs

Don’t camp under an old wind turbine

What weighs 100 tons, sits 100 meters above the ground, leaks transmission fluid and may disintegrate into a million sharp fibreglass spikes…

….

NoTricksZone

As much of Germany’s nearly 30,000 strong fleet of wind turbines approach 20 or more years in age, the list of catastrophic collapses is growing more rapidly. The turbines are now being viewed by technical experts as “ticking time bombs”.

According to a commentary by Daniel Wetzel of online German Daily ‘Die Welt’, the aging rickety wind turbines are poorly inspected and maintained and thus are now posing a huge risk.

Over the past months alone there’s been a flurry of reports over wind turbines failing catastrophically and collapsing to the ground, e.g. see here, here and here.

Industrial systems in Germany need to get technical inspections and safety approvals, but wind turbines don’t…

Read the rest at NoTricksZone

Vernunftkraft keeps a list of failures.

The Greens, of course, are apoplectic (not).

_______________________

Photo: this particular turbine crashed in Antarctica. If you own a photo of a failing German one, please let me know.

[...]

Midweek Unthreaded

The Australian magical NEG target which turns black coal to white elephants

Australia is figuring out how to change the global climate and power up the nation. It’s the old “have cake: eat cake: sell cake and build a sea-wall with cake” dilemma. The PM, Malcolm Turnbull, has come up with a plan called the National Energy Guarantee (NEG), which will manage to hurt the environment, jobs and industry at the same time.

Who benefits? Gas companies, Renewables Co. Who loses? Everyone else.

One of the key ideas is that we should have an average emissions target of 0.4 magical tons of CO2 per MWh, because “storms”. Tom Quirk has laid out our current situation below and how (theoretically) we might meet that target. (Especially if clouds start raining money, thinks Jo, preferably in USD and filling Lake Eyre.)

The “good news” is that South Australia can stop already, it’s there. The bad news is that the rest of Australia will need to catch up with South Australia, including the size of the electricity bills (and then some).

In 12 years Australia needs to shut nearly every single coal plant thus turning black coal into white elephants. The one last black coal plant or two will operate barely at break-even point, sitting [...]

Weekend Unthreaded

Crocodiles and Jellyfish are coming to get you — stay safe, install solar now!

Oh the dilemma. When faced with a crocodile do you get out a gun or put up a windmill?

It could be that natural cycles change animal habitats as they have for millions of years. It could be that we made crocodiles a protected species and stopped hunting and killing the wild ones in Queensland from 1974, but whatever, it must be climate, climate, climate. Buy an EV and stop the spread of crocodiles!

Crikey! Crocs heading south and other changes forecast for Australia’s wildlife

ABC “Science” By environment reporter Nick Kilvert

The chances of limiting climate change appear to be growing slimmer by the day — and this may have big implications for Australia’s wildlife.

Recently a number of crocodiles have been trapped in the Mary River, just 105 kilometres north of Noosa and 250km south of their usual range.

Irukandji jellyfish too, appear to be expanding south, with 10 suspected stings near Fraser Island and a child stung at Mooloolaba last year.

Numerous tropical fish have been recorded up to 1,000 kilometres south of their traditional range, such as the Great Barrier Reef’s lemon-peel angelfish which turned up on [...]

Junk generators: 2 million expensive solar panels cut Australian total CO2 emissions by 1%

Solar panels across Australia reduce our emissions by almost nothing.

The ABC is whipping Gorgon for not getting carbon sequestration to work, claiming that this is a crisis that will wipe out the entire “gain” from installing two million solar panels across Australia. What the ABC don’t say is that the entire infrastructure of solar panels (on 20% of Australian homes) is only reducing our CO2 emissions by one pointless percent. So the Gorgon delay in achieving the impossible is likewise irrelevant. Australian emissions are rising at 1.5% pa now anyhow.

In terms of our national emissions, the real question is if we shut every solar panel in the nation would anyone notice?

Despite the $1.1b budget, the ABC could have got this bigger and more useful perspective for free from any number of skeptics, none of whom it tried to interview.

With minimal training in arithmetic ABC staff could even have figured it out for themselves. Instead, as per usual, the ABC provides free advertorials for green-industry hacks, with no hard questions and little research.

Can someone please explain to ABC investigative journalists the difference between a megaton and a ton? All they had to do was graph [...]

ABC comedy, the jokes on you — Here’s to a holiday on stained mattresses in the back yard

Thank the ABC. This is the best comedy I’ve seen them do on “climate change” — albeit unwittingly.  The ABC has a new comedy show on Wednesday nights called RoadMap to Paradise.

This is Big-Government Comedy. You’ll swear this was made by a skeptic. No really.

Unconvinced that ‘feel good’ environmentalism is making any real impact @mrcoreywhite sets out to come up with a fresh solution. Could incentivising greed and laziness for a good cause be just what this country needs? #RoadmapToParadise tonight at 9.35pm. pic.twitter.com/JJUqU4lblp

— ABC TV Australia (@ABCTV) June 20, 2018

Is he a skeptic infiltrator? Nooo. The same episode includes an interview with a CSIRO scientist, Kathleen McInnes, who drops in to tell us things are “pretty bad”. And one of Corey White’s big ideas is to treat Elon Musk’s business like a tax deductible religion. I don’t think he sees the funny side of that either.

What was he thinking?

It’s tough being a comedian.

I’m guessing Cory White wanted to expose the futility of individual voluntary action to change the planet’s climate, with the bigger aim of convincing the audience that only Big-Government regulation can save us!

Sadly for him, Big-government action [...]

Let us choose: If the public really thinks ABC is “priceless” they will be happy to pay for it

Australia’s public broadcaster is under public fire. It’s about time.

The rank and file of the Liberal Party voted to sell it off which sparked off a national debate about the value of subsidizing the largest media outlet in the country in an era when the average Australian can broadcast their opinion for free from their own phone. We don’t need a government funded voice, we just need free speech.

Fighting back, the ABC head says Australians think the “ABC is priceless”, so I say: Fine — let those people pay for it.

I’m Pro-Choice on the ABC. Let the people choose which media outlets they want to contribute to. Since the ABC costs $1.1b that’s about $50 per person per annum or $200 per household of four (assuming everyone pays, which they won’t). I say, launch the IPO, sell the shares, or at least, give us the tick-a-box option on our tax return. Make it voluntary.

Stop the forced payments for Big-Government-lovin’ propaganda

We could spell out the actual cost on the tax returns, and ask who wants to pay…

In a democracy this could be done for lots of items — want to send your tax dollars [...]