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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Midweek Unthreaded

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Rating: 7.9/10 (12 votes cast)
Midweek Unthreaded, 7.9 out of 10 based on 12 ratings

113 comments to Midweek Unthreaded

  • #
    el gordo

    ‘Mark McVeigh is suing his super fund for failing to provide details on how it will minimise the risk of climate change.

    ‘It’s the first time a superannuation fund has been sued for not doing enough on climate change’

    ABC

    60

    • #
      Graeme No.3

      el gordo:

      Perhaps the super fund should sue Mark McVeigh for failing to find out what a super fund is supposed to do?

      190

      • #
        el gordo

        Its a great opportunity for REST to defend itself with a high profile legal team, including a silk.

        McVeigh says its nothing to do with the environment, which is an untruth. What he wants is to name and shame super funds involved in fossil fuels and sway the brainwashed masses to desert those super funds.

        70

      • #
        yarpos

        Share prices

        AGL last 12 months -11.5%
        IFN (infinigen) last 12 months -14%

        WHC (Whitehaven Coal) last 12 months +90%
        BHP last 12 months +9%

        yeah get out of fossil fuels and minimise the risk of having a retirement income, all because he imagines something is happening. Spare me.

        100

    • #

      Is this the footballer?

      21

    • #

      Anyone want a bit of fun? Look up where the Clinton Foundation and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation park their money. Then you won’t wonder any more how people who just give-give-give can get-get-get so much. (Hint: it’s not a karma thing.)

      10

  • #
    Another Ian


    Robert of Ottawa
    July 24, 2018 at 10:04 am

    High electricity prices is inhibiting business investment, so it is bad to stop a subsidized investment that will increase electricity prices?”

    http://www.smalldeadanimals.com/index.php/2018/07/23/reader-tips-8/#comment-1132478

    50

  • #
    Another Ian

    The “Reverse Midas Touch”

    “Irony Can Be So Ironic! Grid Storage Increases Carbon Emissions!”

    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2018/07/23/irony-can-be-so-ironic-grid-storage-increases-carbon-emissions/

    30

    • #
      PeterS

      Intelligent people know it’s not about climate change. It’s the left’s hatred of the West and their belief the West alone is responsible for the evils of the world. Their desperate efforts to destroy the West is being achieved by crippling the grid in terms of cost to the consumer and instability. Both our major parties are assisting in this process whether they realise it or not. Anyone who votes 1 for either major party is unwillingly colluding with them to achieve the left’s goal to destroy the West. How is that for being patriotic?

      83

      • #
        el gordo

        Climate change is not an organised conspiracy, its primarily virtue signalling and the left is big on that.

        I strongly disagree with your comment that ‘its not about climate change.”

        54

        • #
          PeterS

          Sorry I wasn’t clear. I know it’s “about” climate climate change but it’s not to control climate change. It’s about controlling the people.

          81

          • #
            el gordo

            That is what civilised society is all about, humans can be unruly at times. Its true that the far left has infected the democratic system in Australia, with climate change alarmism, but this misinformation can be easily remedied once we dismantle the ABC.

            40

            • #
              PeterS

              Dismantle the ABC? That’s like asking for the dismantling of the UN. Hardly going to happen any time soon. If anything the ABC is being supported by both major parties to maintain their populism.

              Yes if we didn’t have some kind of control of the people society would become chaotic and collapse fairly quickly. Control though is a two edged sword. In the wrong hands it disrupts society and results in a similar albeit less chaotic collapse. That’s the situation we are in at the moment with either major party in government.

              60

              • #
                el gordo

                The majors are still the main contenders and I’m still hopeful of seeing the Coalition return to the centre right.

                ‘….the ABC is being supported by both major parties to maintain their populism.’

                The Coalition is on a mission to cut the ABC budget, but this is piecemeal and won’t be sufficient to stop the propaganda. Which means we have to bide our time until we get the Greens out of the newsroom, then after a year we can dismantle the whole box and dice.

                Aunty is the architect of misinformation, the electorate and politicians have been swept along in a wave of scientific ignorance. Not sure how it will all end up.

                41

              • #
                el gordo

                ‘But with ongoing funding cuts, complaints of bias, government reviews, Murdoch media antagonism, internal instability, and a communications minister who is a member of a rightwing think tank that advocates the end of public broadcasting, the forces against the ABC loom large.’

                Meade/Guardian

                00

              • #
                yarpos

                populism? how many actually watch the ABC? what are the demographics?

                I think its more about the idea of what we think the ABC is or was, rather than what it is at the moment or what the real viewing audience is.

                22

              • #
                Annie

                I don’t watch any ABC except Call the Midwife and I’m not sure that I can be bothered with much more of that.

                13

              • #
                Graeme No.3

                Yarpos at 3.1.1.1.3

                I think it is 43% of the population watch it more than 10 minutes in a week. And much of what is watched is BBC repeats.

                11

              • #
                Bodge it an scarpa

                Give Poldark a try Sat evening before Midwife Annie. I find it addictive.

                10

            • #
              Philo

              My understanding, civilization developed, at every level, to control young people from puberty through age 25 or so. During that time they are subject to wild swings in hormones, emotions, feelings, you name it. Left to themselves they cause great commotion. Communities from chimpanzees and pre-humans combined have developed social structures, traditions, myths, ethics, education, training and many other tools to keep children in check and help them develop into useful citizens.

              The last century or so has artificially extended childhood into early adulthood, mainly by extending schooling often to well past age 25 when resources are available.

              20

    • #
      Hanrahan

      In and of itself, energy storage is neither clean nor dirty — it is neutral, as likely to boost the revenue of fossil fuel plants as it is to help clean energy.

      My bold.
      This is stating the bleeding obvious. Any and all benefit of grid storage at current penetration levels of wind/solar will naturally be gained by the thermal plants – You don’t run hydro plants to recharge storage and nuclear tends to be fully utilised already. Ergo emissions increase by cycling inefficiencies.

      10

  • #
    Another Ian

    “President Trump Confronts Multinational Big-AG, Proposes Bridge Subsidy To Break Up Controlled Markets and Exploitative Contract Farming…”

    https://theconservativetreehouse.com/2018/07/24/president-trump-confronts-multinational-big-ag-proposes-bridge-subsidy-to-break-up-controlled-markets-and-exploitative-contract-farming/

    20

  • #
    Another Ian

    “The Serf On Soros”

    https://chiefio.wordpress.com/2018/07/21/the-serf-on-soros/

    And

    “The Fatal Lure of Democratic Socialism”

    https://rosebyanyothernameblog.wordpress.com/

    50

  • #
    Another Ian

    “BUSTED: How @ed_hawkins turned simple linear temperature increase into an accelerating spiral hockeystick”

    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2018/07/24/how-ed_hawkins-turned-linear-temperature-increase-into-a-spiral-hockeystick/

    40

  • #
    Robber

    O ye of little faith.
    The national energy guarantee decision paper, delivered to the states this week, PROMISES higher than expected household electricity savings of $550 a year. And apparently we are all going to save $300 next year with or without the NEG.
    What will drive wholesale prices down from $85/Mwhr to $50/MWhr in the next three years as reported in The Australian article? Dr Finkel reported that the levelised cost of wind/solar in 2020 would be $92-91/Mwhr in 2020, while new coal would be $76/MWhr. So none are economic at the “promised” $50/MWhr.
    It forecasts wholesale power prices would be 20 per cent lower over the 2020s under the NEG than without it, but prices would rise in 2022-23 — with or without it — due to the closure of AGL’s Liddell power station in NSW. So why is it to close? Because AGL won’t sell it, and won’t maintain it.

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    • #
      wal1957

      The national energy guarantee decision paper, delivered to the states this week, PROMISES higher than expected household electricity savings of $550 a year. And apparently we are all going to save $300 next year with or without the NEG.

      …and the real problem is that a lot of people will believe that rubbish!
      The sooner the grid fails, the better.
      It’s going to happen. It’s just a matter of when.

      50

  • #
    el gordo

    ‘The Turnbull government’s National Energy Guarantee – the centrepiece of its climate change and electricity policy – would help cut an average household’s power bills by $50 in its first year but do little to cut carbon emissions over the decade to 2030.’

    Hannam/SMH

    50

    • #
      PeterS

      Such an decrease is useless. It now exposes Turnbull as a phoney (which I already knew) and is as strong a believer in renewables as Shorten (and Rudd/Gillard before him). As far as I’m concerned if Turnbull is still the leader of the LNP at the next election, anyone who votes 1 for either major party is unwillingly assisting in the destruction of our grid and hence our economy.

      70

      • #
        el gordo

        The green/left don’t like it because it doesn’t go far enough to reduce emissions, so they would be livid if Hele is in the NEG mix.

        Failure to get bipartisan support from the states on this matter should provide a catalyst for political upheaval.

        10

        • #
          PeterS

          Yet we all know we could reduce our emissions to zero (meaning we shut down everything and kill off every man, woman and child) and it will make absolute zero impact on the climate. That’s how insane both sides have become. Still the majority of voters will vote for one or the other side. Crazy.

          50

          • #
            el gordo

            Cory is still quiet on climate change, if the ACP says nothing then I’ll be voting for a major, or perhaps Informally depending on circumstances.

            All he has to say is that increasing industrial CO2 is good for the planet and our grandchildren.

            22

            • #
              PeterS

              He’s effectively stated that within his policies on energy. You’ve seen them. In contrast the LNP, ALP and Greens are hell bent on reducing emissions and supporting renewables with RET and other schemes. Cory states all such schemes must be scrapped, we should announce our withdrawal from the Paris Agreement, and we should be technology agnostic, meaning nuclear should be allowed to be included in the mix if it’s viable and competitive with coal (probably not). Repeated below are his key points from his web site. Neither major party comes remotely close to these points and Cory’s energy polices are LOUD and CLEAR. Yes they could be louder but he also has to speak on other issues given his party is tiny and has precious little resources. In any case he’s ignored by the majority of the public so there’s little chance of him making a dent in the system. Apparently people prefer to support one or the other major party and hence their energy polices.

              Australians deserve the most reliable and affordable energy in the world.
              With electricity generation, we are technology-agnostic but subsidy-averse.
              We support nuclear power and a nuclear fuel cycle industry.
              We support all forms of electricity generation and will provide them with legislative certainty and legal protection.
              We do not support any renewable energy targets.
              We will remove all taxpayer and cross subsidies to electricity generation.
              We will require all electricity supplied to the grid to be useable – that is, predictable and consistent in output (kWhrs) and synchronous (at the required 50 Hz range).
              We will allow market forces to provide the most efficient power generation available.
              We will withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord.

              30

              • #
                el gordo

                Cory: ‘We will withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord.’

                Journalist: ‘Why?’

                Cory: ‘Australians deserve the most reliable and affordable energy in the world.’

                Journalist: Yes but what of reducing our emissions to save the planet?

                Cory: Carbon dioxide doesn’t cause global warming, so we do not support any renewable energy targets.

                61

            • #
              yarpos

              I was going to keep supporting the independent in Indi, but it appears she has drunk deeply from the AGW kool aid. Not sure what next really.

              20

      • #
        Hasbeen

        You do have to be careful Peter.

        Get your vote wrong & we get higher electricity prices.

        Get it even more wrong & we get a new flood of boat people.

        Which do you think is more important?

        53

  • #
    Graeme No.3

    And the Snowy Authority seemed to think that wholesale electricity prices would rise from (roughly) $90 to $170 in 2024 until the Snojob 2 scheme started.

    20

  • #
    C. Paul Barreira

    In Laos:

    According to Laos News Agency, several hundred people are missing after a hydroelectric dam in Sanamxay district of Attapeu province collapsed late Monday, sending fast-moving water through six villages, including Yai Thae, Hinlad, Mai, Thasengchan, Tha Hin, and Samong.

    Who built this dam, I wonder?

    Not really a problem at lake Eucumbene—little or no water! It’s gone down the River Murray and—most likely—out to sea.

    21

  • #
    • #
      Dave in the States

      The ambivalence is kid of a double edged sword, though. The long march through the bureaucracies and through academia continues unabated. Policies go into effect. Climate action plans are written into everything thing from local governance to the school district curriculum to private business plans submitted for bank loans. Subsidy dependence bondage is ratcheted tighter. Turds get baked into the cake at every level. Everyday freedom is diminished just a little more. And nobody cares.

      70

    • #
      Mark M

      HOLLYWOOD DOUBLE FAIL ON BORDER, CLIMATE CHANGE

      Climate Change the Sequel (Rinse, Lather, Repeat)

      “The industry couldn’t do much more to convince citizens climate change is an existential threat.

      We’ve seen a flood of documentaries covering the subject, most notably Al Gore’s 2006 Oscar-winning film “An Inconvenient Truth.”

      Sure, the sequel flopped.”

      https://www.hollywoodintoto.com/border-climate-change/

      20

  • #
  • #
    • #
      yarpos

      Thumbing through the RACV magazine (local roadside assist car club) last night. They had their annual review of car running costs. Its a comprehensive study that looks at total cost of ownership over 5 years.

      This year EVs and hybrids are included and are sitting at the top of the survery as the most expensive to own, with the Tesla S topping the study.

      Why would you own one of these things? so you can preen a bit and go whir rather than vroom?

      50

      • #
        beowulf

        Another of the standard measures for wind power from my link in #14 — 654MW is “enough to power 1,697,368 Tesla Model S cars back home for Christmas”. I assume they mean it will take them from July to December to make it home in their Tesla clunkers, allowing for re-charges, battery fires, battery replacements and wind energy droughts along the way. What a recommendation.

        30

    • #
      PeterS

      Does that mean I can buy one of his cars and the next day go back and ask for a refund and keep the car? Probably not :-)

      20

  • #
    beowulf

    For lovers of wind power and renewables in general.

    Current total UK wind power production as at 10.18am Aust EST:
    719MW — 3% Capacity Factor — enough to power 399,444 kettles or 143,800,000 bike lights the site below tells us.

    I’m not sure if it is meant to be a comedy website, but it sure acts like one at the moment. This level of production is about what it has been for the past 6 weeks and is predicted to be for another 3 or 4 weeks of high pressure doldrums.

    https://winderful.diascreative.net/

    20

  • #
  • #
    pat

    ***these were the first words I heard when I woke up this morning:

    Power price warning issued to Labor states
    The Australian · 12 hours ago
    ***Wavering Labor states have been warned that they will deny consumers lower power prices and spark a collapse in green energy investment if they fail to support Malcolm Turnbull’s signature electricity reform, in a final pitch to break the nation’s energy policy deadlock…

    so much wrong in that sentence.

    50

  • #
    Another Ian

    A new excuse for South Australia – “The Russians did it”

    “This Is Your Power Grid On Windoze”

    http://www.smalldeadanimals.com/index.php/2018/07/24/this-is-your-power-grid-on-windoze/#comments

    00

    • #
      Lance

      Interesting.

      There is a technical alternative for grid survival.

      Create a date/time/temperature model of required generation by grid node for the area being served from historical data.

      Track the model in real time for deviations.

      Create a 5, 10 , and 15 minute window of probability with respect to actual vs historical demand.

      Apply that requirement to the available generation based on their actual capacity factor and dispatchability by 10 minute interval averages.

      Record the predicted model and dispatch orders.

      In case of interruption, disconnect from the SCADA controls, relegate to the probability model, and correct in real time for actual voltage and frequency deviation by means of existing sensors.

      In other words, create a rational “fail safe, fall back position” that is statistically probable.

      Control theory can do very reasonable things that are quite remarkable. Not perfect, but rational and probable given a runaway or unstable situation.

      The idea that a fully integrated and automated system without a fallback model is possible in the face of active and probable threats is kind of ignorant. Thus faileth the smart grid, absent a prudent layer of control.

      It isn’t very smart to allow computer supervision of a complex system if the system has no means of catastrophic error correction.

      Disconnection of the integrated system from any SCADA central control and fallback to a flexible interim control model would seem reasonable if external threats are probable.

      Essentially, this is a math problem constrained by historical data, real time feedback, and a willingness to temporarily suspend efficiency and unreliable generation for the purpose of grid survival.

      It can be done. It is an algorithm. Not an impossibility.

      The grid must be survivable even if it is broken into self controlling islands of stability. Yes there will be consequences. But nothing approaching a grid collapse.

      Logic is King. Mathematics are Queen.

      10

      • #
        Robber

        I would have thought that is exactly how AEMO as grid operator works.

        10

        • #
          Lance

          You’re right, of course, in an ideal world.
          But what happens if the grid control system is hacked and meddled with?

          That’s the point of having a fallback position that has been modeled in advance so that the grid can disconnect from AEMO supervision if the grid control is compromised and operate autonomously on a sectionalized basis.

          Think of it in terms of “Battlestar Gallactica”. If all the systems are interconnected they can all be crashed simultaneously by a bad actor or a bad event.

          If the system has a recovery protocol, it can sectionalize itself and operate in survival mode until standard control protocols are restored.

          Stuxnet virus crippled Iranian centrifuges by attacking the Siemens PLC controllers. That horse has left the barn and the programming is now everywhere.

          The system itself has to have a way to cripple by if such an event occurs.

          I’m just saying that thinking about such a situation in advance is way better than saying “Oh Crap. Now what do we do?”

          00

  • #
    Kinky Keith

    While I don’t watch TV any more, it’s hard not to pick up on stuff while driving.

    In particular there has been a reminder of the perspective taken by government and the media in exposing people under their care to the danger of fire.

    Sadly, seeming to match the last Victorian Fire tragedy, we now have The Athens firestorm with 70 dead, so far.

    Horrific and totally unnecessary deaths, resulting from the perspective taken by governments on what to do to prevent firestorm in residential areas.

    Greece has a serious fire history.

    In listening to news reports of Greece, the two main issues spoken about were the dryness of the combustible material and the strong winds.

    The one thing missing was the attribution of the event to global warming, but I suspect that it will be given prominence elsewhere.

    From the Only practical approach possible in avoiding firestorms, the total absence of the main preventative task was omitted.

    No talk about creating a safe human environment by clearing safe areas and escape routes.

    No bushfire prevention, by removing excess undergrowth.

    Fires are not uncommon worldwide but various governments can avoid spending valuable tax dollars by giving homage to the nominal cause of the Firestorm,

    Climate change.

    The real cause of these fires and ensuing deaths is the failure and refusal to clear hazardous situations.

    The reasons behind this approach vary from a blind approach to Environmentalism to the purely mercenary approach of saving some cash to spend on other things, principally, reelection campaigns.

    KK

    51

    • #
      pat

      25 Jul: SMH: Europe burns as climate change fuels ‘forest fire danger extremes’
      By Nick Miller
      Sweden has lost an estimated 30,000 hectares of forest in wildfires across the country which were still burning on Tuesday – though the number of fires had dropped from ***80 last week to around ***20…
      The area is more than double that damaged in the 2014 fire in Västmanland, which at the time was said to be Sweden’s worst since the 19th century, The Local Sweden reported…

      Another report from the European Environment Agency said Mediterranean countries were already seeing more heat extremes, reduced rainfall and river flows, and resulting severe droughts, lower crop yields, forest fires and heatwave deaths.
      In the north of the continent, the temperature rise will be even bigger than the global average, with a decrease in snow and ice cover, an increase in crop yields and decrease in heating costs, but increasing risk of damage from winter storms…

      “[These heatwaves are] exactly the kind of event we are expecting to see,” said Professor Corinne Le Quere, director of the climate change research team at the University of East Anglia.
      “In a warmer climate we expect more extreme events, we expect extreme heatwaves to be hotter and last longer.”
      However fire is “a whole different beast” and harder to predict, she said. Wildfires have a range of causes and only some are linked to climate change: for example heat drying out forests, and more lightning starting fires.
      Some wildfires, such as those two years ago in Canada, have been closely examined and the attribution to climate change is “very clear”, Le Quere said…

      She expects scientists to closely examine the fires in Sweden this year, to see if there can be an attribution to climate change. If so, this may confound models that had predicted no increase in fires due to a predicted increase in rainfall.

      Le Quere said it was clear that global warming would continue as long as carbon emissions were not brought under control, leading to more and more extreme hot weather.
      “We really need to think about how do we tackle climate change in a way that protects us and reduces risk,” she said.

      Research estimated that without mitigation and adaptation there would be 200,000 heat-related deaths per year in Europe by 2100, as well as €10 billion ($15.7 billion) worth of river flood damages, increased forest fire damage and reduced crop yields…

      The reduction can be achieved through effective carbon prices and regulation and through investment in renewable energy and energy efficiency, the EEA said.
      https://www.smh.com.au/world/europe/europe-burns-as-climate-change-fuels-forest-fire-danger-extremes-20180725-p4zteh.html

      not mentioned:

      6 Jun: The Local Sweden: Swedish police arrest woman for starting forest fire
      Swedish police have arrested a woman on suspicion of deliberately starting one of three forest fires in central Sweden.
      The woman is accused of starting a fire in Broddbo, north of Sala, on Tuesday, shortly after firefighters had extinguished a blaze which broke out on Monday in the nearly village of Rörbo…

      Police are also investigating whether the woman could have also been involved in the Rörbo fire and in a third fire which broke out on Tuesday.
      “When we already suspect that a fire has been deliberately started and then two more start in more or less the same time and place, of course we start to look at them too,” Hedström’s colleague Daniel Wikdahl told TT…

      Sweden’s state weather forecaster SMHI warned that both the temperature and the frequency of strong gusts of winds were likely to increase on Wednesday afternoon…
      https://www.thelocal.se/20180606/swedish-police-arrest-woman-for-starting-forest-fire

      ***MSM is reporting large numbers of fires, but I get the impression the real number is far less:

      Visit Sweden: Important information about forest fires
      Announcement to the general public 23rd July:
      Four critical forest fires are in progress, and there is a very high risk of more, especially in the southern part of the country and in the Mälardal region
      https://visitsweden.com/important-information-about-forest-fires/

      EU Open Data: Forest fire in Västmanland, Sweden (2018-06-06)
      Now a large fire is undergoing in Västmanland at three differernt sites (Broddbo, Ulvsbo, Rörbo) close to the area of the disasterus fire in 2014. Strong winds are making the work to get the fire in control troublesome.
      https://data.europa.eu/euodp/data/dataset/b8e233f0-68cd-49a7-8815-4db1d28697e4

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      • #
        pat

        ***not mentioned by Fairfax (or the rest of the MSM):

        17 Jul: The Local Sweden: What you need to know about Sweden’s historic wildfire outbreak
        Human error
        ***Many of the fires are thought to have been started by people using disposable barbecues, despite a ban on lighting them and any other kind of open fire in the majority of municipalities at the moment…

        Though there have been wildfires across the length and breadth of the country this summer, the three worst affected regions are in central Sweden – Gävleborg, Jämtland and Dalarna…
        https://www.thelocal.se/20180717/sweden-battles-most-serious-wildfire-situation-of-modern-times-heres-what-you-need-to-know

        latest: only four fires not under control now?

        24 Jul: The Local Sweden: AFP: Sweden faces ‘extreme’ risk of even more wildfires
        The civil protection agency MSB counted 27 active fires across Sweden on Monday, half the previous day’s number.

        ***But at least four of the fires had not been brought under control, MSB said, and weather conditions were stacked against firefighters…
        https://www.thelocal.se/20180723/sweden-faces-extreme-risk-of-even-more-wildfires

        30

        • #
          pat

          BBC: As it happened: West of England
          23:36 29 Jun
          Barbecues causing moorland fires
          Disposable barbecues are causing fires on Cleeve Common in Gloucestershire because the grass has become so dry from the hot weather.
          Despite them not being allowed on the moorland, rangers are finding them and say they’re having to take extra steps to reduce the risk of a fire.
          Additional warning signs have been put up, and teams carrying water have been monitoring the area until late at night…

          19 Jul: Manchester Evening News: People are trying to have barbecues at Winter Hill – while firefighters continue to tackle blaze
          The fire service has had to issue a warning following reports of people carrying disposable barbecues attempting to get on the site
          By Sophie Halle-Richards
          Firefighters continuing to tackle the blaze at Winter Hill have issued a warning following reports of people carrying disposable barbecues attempting to get on the site…
          At the height of the incident, there were over 30 appliances supported by multiple teams to tackle two separate fires on either side of Winter Hill.
          On June 30, the fire on the Bolton side accelerated due to increased wind speed causing both fires to combine into one.
          A major incident was then declared…

          Two men, aged 20 and 22, were arrested on suspicion of arson with intent to endanger life in connection with the blaze. They were later released under investigation…
          https://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/greater-manchester-news/winter-hill-fire-barbecue-warning-14930893

          20 Jul: The Oldham Times: Fools on the hills still lighting barbecues
          by Nick Jackson
          THOUGHTLESS visitors to one of Oldham’s favourite beauty spots ravaged by devastating fires are still flouting a ban on barbecues.
          The Oldham Times, backed by frustrated locals, has kept watch on Dovestone Reservior at Greenfield and discovered a trail of potential fire hazards left by careless day trippers.

          In one case, a hearth had been made out of stones and remains of a charcoal fire were left near the shoreline at the sailing club headquarters.
          And we have evidence of up to 30 people pitching a tent in sight of a fire engine and setting up four barbecues.
          A local who took the pictures said: “I couldn’t believe they’d just set up camp here. It’s unreal.”

          However, police and locals say since the arrival of the Dovestone marshals the number of barbecues at the picturesque site has reduced, helped by shops refusing to sell disposable barbecues.

          “But,” said one concerned villager, “it’s still unbelievable in the wake of us still recovering from the devastating moorland fires, they still want to set barbecues up here at all.
          “Why can’t they do their cooking at home and just come here to enjoy the scenery?”

          There are “ no bbq” signs erected by the Peak District National Park, supplemented by hand- written warnings near the Dovestone car park and on a gate leading to a path skirting the reservoir.
          Yet on one of my surveys, a group of eight people, carrying a large barbecue, blithely ignored the notices and headed for the moors…
          http://www.theoldhamtimes.co.uk/news/16367430.fools-on-the-hills-still-lighting-barbecues/

          20

    • #
      Hanrahan

      I watched a vid today where a Greek explained that developers in Greece cannot clear forests but they are allowed to do so if it has been burnt, ergo, developers pay Armenians to start the fires.

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      beowulf

      From the politicians’ play book it’s the same old cycle: do nothing about known hazards — act surprised when a disaster occurs — blame global warming — repeat.

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      yarpos

      Sadly true KK, and I wouldnt mind betting that after a generation or less even Victoria will be back on the path of self immolation. In VIC we havent really learnt the lessons in a systemic way. You can see evidence of burn offs and yoiu can also see evidence of urban fringe suburbs built in forests with gutter overflowing with gum leaves.

      The other States chose not to learn from the bitter experience of others with the recent south coast fires a classic example. The approach is too fragmented and overall we are too stupid or distracted to sustain the required effort long term.

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        Kinky Keith

        yarpos, it might be that the answer to why we still have fatal Fires is that for most in government and Environmentalism, the solution is just too obvious.

        Literally, they can’t see the wood for the trees and can’t acknowledge that all you have to do is keep flammable bush, trees and undergrowth under control.

        Looking on Google Earth’s street view in the suburb in Athens that was involved, most of the access streets were little more than narrow lanes.
        That’s not a problem in itself, but those lanes were lined, both sides with Bush, trees and hedges that would be a disaster once a fire took hold.

        I suspect it was the overgrown back yards and public spaces near the cliff that made movement impossible. People would have been surrounded by fire.

        That’s a logistics problem, but you have to change nice hedges for less attractive wood or other fencing in the lanes.

        Faced with your family having an escape route in the case of fire, there shouldn’t be much opposition to change, logically.

        Trouble is that emotion overrides logic.

        KK

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        Annie

        We are also bullied by greenies bleating about possum homes, ignoring the fact that there are protected areas for them which are carefully looked after by DELWP and Vic Forests. I rather think the safety of humans is pretty important too. (Understatement, in case it isn’t obvious).
        The roadsides around here where we had the Black Saturday Firestorm are a complete disgrace and yet the state is wallowing in more than 1/2 million of our dollars, supposedly for waste management and the environment. Theere is litter disfiguring the landscape everywhere and some of it can cause fires and other parts of it can cause injury to wildlife. Greenies? Huh. :(

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    pat

    Aug 2007: UK Telegraph: Greek fires blamed on ‘culture of arson’
    Greek authorities battling forest fires for the fourth day in a row yesterday attacked the country’s “culture of arson”, which has been widely blamed for the catastrophe.
    Prosecutors want to use powers of investigation usually reserved for terrorism cases to track down the culprits, while a senior government minister said they posed an “asymmetric threat” – language usually reserved for suicide bombers.

    In Athens, Dimitris Papangelopoulos, normally a senior prosecutor in terrorism cases, has ordered an investigation to find out whether the attacks could be considered terrorism.
    Vyron Polydoras, the public order minister, made it clear that he believed anti-terror laws were applicable. “We can say this constitutes an asymmetric threat,” he said.

    Anti-terror squads were already questioning 32 suspects yesterday afternoon, as the Greek government offered rewards of up to \u20AC1 million (£675,000) for information.
    The money appeared to be a concerted attempt to challenge what seems the routine of setting fires every summer.
    Dimitris Karavellas, the Greek World Wildlife Fund’s director, said yesterday: “It is a culture of arson.”

    He said Greeks “still consider the forest as an area of land for development” and criticised the country’s failure to establish a land registry that sets out which areas are protected from development.
    “We are the only country in the EU that doesn’t have a land registry,” he said. “We get situations where there are forest fires one year and nothing but houses a couple of years later.”…

    Smaller fires across Greece in June and July have already prompted large demonstrations in the first public demand for tougher anti-arson legislation…

    ***Politicians in Italy yesterday called for “decisive action” against arsonists who have been blamed for fires that have killed 13 people this summer.
    Authorities believe most of the fires were deliberate, with reports of the Mafia paying arsonists to clear land wanted for profitable development.
    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/1561542/Greek-fires-blamed-on-culture-of-arson.html

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    pat

    24 Jul: AFP: Flames ravage Greek seaside as wildfires kill 74
    Government spokesman Dimitris Tzanakopoulos said “15 fires had started simultaneously on three different fronts in Athens” on Monday…

    Officials raised the possibility the blazes could have been started deliberately by criminals out to ransack abandoned homes.
    “I am really concerned by the parallel outbreak of these fires,” Tsipras said.
    Supreme court prosecutors announced they had opened an investigation into the causes of the fire…
    https://www.afp.com/en/news/2265/flames-ravage-greek-seaside-wildfires-kill-74-doc-17v5m314

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    pat

    May 2014: National Geographic: Overwhelming Cause of California Wildfires: Humans
    By Warren Cornwall
    Unlike remote parts of the world where natural events like lightning strikes are prime sources of wildfires, in southern California, such fires are almost always started by people. Ninety-five percent have a human cause, according to Cal Fire, the state’s firefighting agency.
    The situation may worsen in the face of expected population growth…

    Most of the big Southern California wildfires of recent years were found to have human causes.
    In 2007 a fallen power line near San Diego set off a fire that scorched nearly 200,000 acres and killed two people.
    In 2009, sparks from a weed cutter are thought to have led to an 8,700 acre fire in Santa Barbara County that torched 80 homes.
    And earlier this month, an illegal campfire started in Rancho Cucamonga grew to 2,700 acres.

    Other area fires have been blamed on chains dragging behind cars and throwing off sparks, smoldering cigarette butts, welding tools, errant gunfire, and arsonists.
    “It’s anything you could possibly think of,” said Alexandra Syphard, a San Diego scientist at the non-profit Conservation Biology Institute who has combed through thousands of California wildfire reports to understand what’s causing the fires. “You see the wildest things. One of them was a satanic ritual.”

    A more common culprit: outdoor equipment, from power saws to lawnmowers. Power tools accounted for more than 20 percent of fires in San Diego County between 2000 and 2010. That was followed by fires caused by campfires (nearly 10 percent), arson (roughly 5 percent), trash burning (around 4 percent), vehicles doing things like sending out sparks or igniting vegetation with overheated tailpipes, downed or malfunctioning power lines, kids playing with fire, and cigarettes…
    “Weather doesn’t cause fires–weather just causes a fire to burn,” said Cal Fire spokesman Daniel Berlant. “It’s the people that have the role of actually preventing that fire.”…

    A study involving both the U.S. Geological Survey’s Keeley and the Conservation Biology Institute’s Syphard found that sprawling “leapfrog” development — in which subdivisions continually pop up at the edge of the woods, beyond existing developments — would lead to more houses lost to fire in Southern California…
    https://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2014/05/140517-san-marcos-wildfires-california-weather/

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    pat

    Australian Govt: Australian Institute of Criminology: Bushfire arson bulletin no. 59.
    The number of fires and who lights them
    The Australian Productivity Commission has calculated that between 2001–02 and 2006–07, the number bushfires in Australia varied from approximately 46,000 to 62,000 per year, with an average of nearly 54,000 fires per year (SGRSP 2008). This agrees quite closely with the average of nearly 52,000 fires per year calculated by the Australian Institute of Criminology (Bryant 2008) using data from fire agencies from 1995–06 to 2005–06. It is estimated that 50 percent of fires are either deliberately lit or suspicious in origin as shown in Figure 1…

    In Australia, it is difficult to get a consolidated understanding of the profile of bushfire arsonists and their motivations, mainly because of the low numbers that are apprehended. There is quite a rich international literature where numbers are higher which suggests a distinct profile, that is, white male, mid-20s, patchy employment record, often above average intelligence but poor academic achievement and poor social development (Willis 2004). However, it is not clear whether this would translate to the Australian context. The results of studies that looked at levels of recidivism have been ambiguous (AIC 2007b). Between 2001 and 2006, 56 percent (n=615/1,099) of convicted structural arsonists and 37 percent (n=49/133) of bushfire arsonists in New South Wales had a prior conviction for a previous offence which suggests that arsonists are not generally specialist offenders (AIC 2007a)…ETC
    https://aic.gov.au/publications/bfab/bfab059

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      pat

      Australian Govt: Australian Institute of Criminology: Bushfire arson bulletin no. 51
      Proportion of deliberate bushfires in Australia
      https://aic.gov.au/publications/bfab/bfab051

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      Ted O'Brien.

      Arson? For what purpose was the fire lit?

      In my time I have lit a lot of fires. Occasionally I burned more than I intended and expected. Once I had to get help to extinguish such a fire when my equipment broke down. But it wasn’t arson. Fortunately no disasters resulted.

      If laws were broken in lighting the fire the arson question would arise.

      Many fires start on roadsides. These are usually caused by cigarette butts, or even just cigarette ashes, discarded from a moving vehicle.

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    Hanrahan

    From the How bright are our politicians? file:

    Watched Pauline quizzing an Admiral in a Senate hearing ask: “Is it true that pump jet propulsion subs can only stay submerged for 20 minutes?”

    Speaking of subs I watched another video of a Collins class eluding US destroyers to go through a choke point and photo another destroyer in the Hawaiian Islands. They did it by playing on their reputation as being noisy so they deliberately made noise and then went silent using ground clutter from the nearby islands to mask active sonar. They took the photos of the destroyer and cranked up the music: I come from the land down under.

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      yarpos

      Good to see they have a sense of priorities and focus on things that make a real difference in their community. I know up until now I though Santa Barbara was a hotbed of straw crime.

      Our council recently spent a lot of effort getting a bulk buy effort of the ground, so people could get solar panels cheaper. You would think that they could have expended the effort on a bulk buy of basic power for the benefit of all residents. But no, they focus on benefiting the few and being on trend with a green “initiative” to present at the next local government conference.

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        Mark M

        All that money spent on renewable energy to save the planet, when they could just have easily jailed people for using plastic straws.

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      Reed Coray

      Now that’s what can properly be called “a strawman position.”

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      Hanrahan

      “If they outlaw straws, only outlaws will have straws”….. Gutfield.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AM0tWkfAR2Q

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    Rob Leviston

    And the Melbourne City council were handing out stainless steel straws! No joke! I’m really starting to wonder about the new Lord Mayor, Sally Capp, she is as green as!

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      Hanrahan

      Where do they find these people? Clover Moore is just as bad with rainbow ped. crossings and expensive outdoor art.

      Steel straws couldn’t be single use and the exterior could be cleaned reliably, BUT ……..

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      Annie

      Are you serious?! Really?! Is it April the 1st yet again or has Melbourne become even battier than it already was? Oh, good grief….what next?
      I’d better get in there to claim my ss straw ;)

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      yarpos

      a stainless steel straw sounds like an offensive weapon

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      toorightmate

      Rob,
      This might just be the last straw.

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    pat

    24 Jul: Climate Depot: Meteorologist Joe Bastardi rips heatwave hysteria: ‘Our scorching global July is about .2C above 1981-2010 average and is only the 11th warmest in last 18 years’
    http://www.climatedepot.com/2018/07/24/meteorologist-joe-bastardi-rips-heatwave-hysteria-our-scorching-global-july-is-about-2c-above-1981-2010-average-and-is-only-the-11th-warmest-in-last-18-years/

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    pat

    24 Jul: WUWT: Jeffrey Sachs: “Trump is taking US down the path to tyranny”… Because Paris Climate Agreement
    Guest bashing by David Middleton
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2018/07/24/jeffrey-sachs-trump-is-taking-us-down-the-path-to-tyranny-because-paris-climate-agreement/

    World Bank Blog: Jeffrey Sachs
    He was called by the New York Times, “probably the most important economist in the world,” and by Time Magazine “the world’s best known economist.” A recent survey by The Economist Magazine ranked Professor Sachs as among the world’s three most influential living economists of the past decade…
    He was among the outside advisors to Pope John Paul II on the encyclical Centesimus Annus and in recent years has worked closely with the Pontifical Academy of Sciences and the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences on the issues of sustainable development…
    Professor Sachs is also a frequent contributor to major publications such as the Financial Times of London, the International Herald Tribune, Scientific American, and Time magazine.

    16 Apr: Bernie Sanders: On the Road: Vatican City
    Pope Francis and Sen. Bernie Sanders met at the Vatican on Saturday…
    Also present at the meeting were Bishop Sanchez Soronda, who invited Sanders to the Vatican, and Jeffrey Sachs, a renowned American economist and adviser to Sanders.
    On Friday, Sanders spoke at a conference hosted by the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences. The high-level meeting marked the 25th anniversary of an important encyclical of Pope John Paul II, Centesimus Annus, which called for an economy of dignity, social justice and environmental sustainability…

    Earth Institute, Columbia University
    posted 04/17/03
    Prestigious Panel Of Scientists, Leaders, And Activists To Advise Ten-Year Vision For The Earth Institute
    The Earth Institute at Columbia University is pleased to announce the appointment of its first External Advisory Board, which includes an impressive range of global-view leaders such as philanthropist George Soros, Harvard Professor Edward O. Wilson, and musician/activist Bono.

    More than half of the 15-member board will convene for the first time in April at the Morningside and Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory campuses of Columbia University for in-depth discussions on major initiatives within The Earth Institute at Columbia University. The Earth Institute is the world’s leading academic center for the integrated study of Earth, its environment, and society. Under the leadership of international economist Jeffrey D. Sachs, the Earth Institute focuses on fostering economic growth in developing nations by promoting human health, spurring innovation, and preserving a sustainable environment…

    The advisers are notable for major global contributions, and include Nobel and Pulitzer Prize winners, former country presidents and presidential advisers, and high-level governmental and non-governmental advisers…
    LISTS ADVISERS/BIOS, INCLUDING SOROS
    http://www.earth.columbia.edu/news/2003/story04-17-03.html

    even some from the left are wise to Sachs:

    Sept 2013: Pacific Standard Mag: The Not-So-Great Professor: Jeffrey Sachs’ Incredible Failure to Eradicate Poverty in Africa
    Jeffrey Sachs was certain he knew how to rid the world of poverty. He even said it would be easy. The world had other ideas.
    by Howard W. French
    The Millennium Villages Project was formally launched in June 2006, with support from the Earth Institute of Columbia University (of which Sachs is the director), the United Nations Development Program, and donors like George Soros. By the end of 2006, it included 12 villages in 10 sub-Saharan countries; the goal was to put each on a path toward economic growth by investing heavily for five years in food production, health care, education, and infrastructure…

    BY THE END OF Munk’s book, the Millennium Villages Project is winding down (it is officially scheduled to end in 2015). Sachs seems defeated by Africa, but defeated in the manner of charismatic savior figures everywhere, for whom setbacks only ever spur quests for new, bigger stages. He campaigned to run the World Bank…

    Munk asks where the money will come from to finish the work in the Millennium Villages. “It is what it is,” he says. “And that’s not meant to be callous.”
    https://psmag.com/social-justice/smart-guy-jeffrey-sachs-nina-munk-idealist-poverty-failure-africa-65348
    May 1998: The Nation: The Harvard Boys Do Russia
    After seven years of economic “reform” financed by billions of dollars in U.S.
    By Janine R. Wedel
    The privatization drive that was supposed to reap the fruits of the free market instead helped to create a system of tycoon capitalism run for the benefit of a corrupt political oligarchy that has appropriated hundreds of millions of dollars of Western aid and plundered Russia’s wealth…

    Through the late summer and fall of 1991, as the Soviet state fell apart, Harvard Professor Jeffrey Sachs and other Western economists participated in meetings at a dacha outside Moscow where young, pro-Yeltsin reformers planned Russia’s economic and political future. Sachs teamed up with Yegor Gaidar, Yeltsin’s first architect of economic reform, to promote a plan of “shock therapy” to swiftly eliminate most of the price controls and subsidies that had underpinned life for Soviet citizens for decades. Shock therapy produced more shock–not least, hyperinflation that hit 2,500 percent–than therapy. One result was the evaporation of much potential investment capital: the substantial savings of Russians…
    https://www.thenation.com/article/harvard-boys-do-russia/

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    pat

    comment in moderation re:

    24 Jul: WUWT: Jeffrey Sachs: “Trump is taking US down the path to tyranny”… Because Paris Climate Agreement

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    Read it and weep. This is just 8 hours old. Poor fellow my Country.

    This is from the Climate Council – Australia’s coal power stations ‘at the end of the line’

    It is chock full of innacuracies.

    I see they still use this cr0ck of bovine waste.

    The estimated cost of building a coal power station with carbon capture and storage in Australia is over six times the equivalent cost of Australia’s largest wind farm.

    Half that cost is for something (CCS) that they will NEVER be able to make work, let alone build, on the scale required.

    Needless to say that this might apply to Macarthur wind.

    It’s based on cost alone, not even Nameplate, let alone actual power generated.

    Tony.

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      Annie

      Just seen the new thread Tony. Coal is definitely King. Why, oh why, are our ‘leaders’ being so unutterably ‘ignorant’ about it?

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      Kinky Keith

      Article in today’s Australian is choc a block to the brim with unintelligible repetitive rubish about power prices and ifs buts and maybes.

      All designed to cover up reality and leave the Voters in the hands of Australia’s benevolent President.

      Engineering Nonsense, Political Manipulation and Sleight of Hand Taxation.

      KK

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      Chad

      The cost of building a coal power station with carbon capture and storage in Australia is over six times the equivalent cost of Australia’s largest wind farm.

      Assuming that is McArthur at 420MW np, and a CF of 0.3, then say an output of 140 MW effective.
      So for the cost of six of those, 6×140 = 840MW of wind , you could have a real HELE power plant capable of at least double that output….continuously , for double the life span !
      Hmm ? Tricky decision !

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    toorightmate

    Chanel 7 Brisbane tonight (25/07) had a separate piece on the impending chance of an el Nina.
    They mentioned that there was a 50% chance of an el Nina (heads or tails???).
    They finished off with a pearler. We could have above average rainfall this coming summer or we could have below average rainfall this coming summer.
    They obviously get their advice from the BoM’s Department of Homogenization.

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      Graeme No.3

      Is that related to Chanel No.5? Or is it some deep reference to something initially smelling sweet but turning out to be expensive alcohol with not much residual substance?

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      Hanrahan

      Chanel 7 Brisbane tonight (25/07) had a separate piece on the impending chance of an el Nina.

      The binary choice is “el nino” or “la nina”, the boy child or the girl child. Sorry about being a pedant, but at least I’m not a spelling nazi. :)

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    Hanrahan

    Turnbull Derangement Syndrome
    We know he isn’t everyone’s favourite polly but this is absurd:

    PRIME Minister Malcolm Turnbull has been trolled for walking up Castle Hill on a “beautiful” morning in Townsville.

    Mr Turnbull stopped in the city on Sunday to talk water, power and Clive Palmer before flying to Tenant Creek.

    But a morning stroll up the iconic monolith Castle Hill, which towers of Townsville, earned him a swift rebuke online.

    It seems he should be on the Liverpool Plains doing something for the droughted farmers. Sunday morning was glorious and hundreds of locals walk up the hill every morning before going to work. Why are they exempt from making an effort for farmers/graziers everywhere? What have the greens done besides making it expensive to pump water?

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