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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Robbins Island Mega wind farm: killing birds and baseload power at 300 kilometers per hour

After nearly two weeks the ABC carrier pigeons finally brought the news that Bob Brown, former Greens leader, is campaigning against this gigantic wind farm — the $1.6b one in NW Tasmania that wants to be the largest in the Southern Hemisphere. Could it be the ABC doesn’t want to admit they were wrong too, pushing wind power non stop for years?

Look how erratic that wind is — 90% one day, zero the next

Tom Quirk looked at the nearest wind farm to Robbins Island, and it’s a fitful machine (see that graph below). Worse, it fails in synchrony with most wind farms in Australia. Thus exacerbating the unstable, fickle supply of wind energy.

 Tom Quirk predicts the demise of another coal plant

Quirk was Deputy Chairman of VENCorp, which managed the transmission and wholesale natural gas market and system planning for the electricity market in Victoria, Australia.

A wind farm on Robbins Island will simply extend the variations in power supplied to the mainland while making no difference to the correlations of wind through the states in the wholesale market. Thus more backup would be required from gas and hydro sources. Loy Yang B with 1,000 MW would clearly become uneconomic to operate since more wind farms are also planned for Victoria…


Woolworth Wind Farm, Tasmania, Output, June 2019, Graph.

Woolworth Wind Farm, Tasmania, Output, June 2019,   Data source

 The proposed 400 to 1,000 MW Robbins Island wind farm is at the North West of Tasmania close to the 140 MW Woolnorth wind farm. The capacity factor for Woolnorth is shown below. The behaviour of the Robbins Island wind farm should be the same with a capacity factor varying from 0 to 90%.

If it’s built, it will make good money for the American owners on the days it works, but make electricity more expensive for Australians. The awkward truth is that, barring freak accidents, its power arrives exactly when Australians don’t need it — when they have an excess from every other wind farm and a steady reliable baseload supply working just fine that must sit around, waiting for the wind to ebb, while it has bills to pay.

Like other windfarms it will help drive the cheap baseload off the grid, and leave Australians footing the bill for high cost peaking replacements.

With turbines moving at 300 km an hour it’ll be the apex predator –  death to avians too.

Whats the difference between and ABC reporter and a PR writer? PR writers are more honest.

They don’t pretend to be journalists.

The ABC headlines Bob Browns opposition as “the height of hypocrisy” – which it is, but hey, at least there’s a point where he admits the truth. Shame he didn’t speak up sooner.

Carrington Clarke of the ABC gives free advertising to an industry, interviews no critics and does no research. Watch the pea, the word “average” is used to bury the bad-news variability. This sounds like it could be from a prospectus for UPC:

“We have an absolutely stellar, solid, low turbulence, high average wind speed around the 36 kilometres an hour average, which in my experience is some of the best in the world,” UPC chief operating officer David Pollington said.

“Best” in this case being “best for the owners”, bad for Australians. For about a quarter of the entire month of June the output was between ten percent of capacity and “zero”.

The average buries the bad news on prices too:

Mr Pollington argues projects like Robbins Island are good news for consumers in Tasmania and on the mainland. “We’re confident that we can produce energy at a lower rate than is currently the average price in the market,” Mr Pollington said. “So we should be helping depress the price of electricity for consumers.”

It’s hardly an achievement if wind turbines can make electricity cheaper than the “average” record high prices we pay now. In any case, it’s the effect on the whole system that matters, not the cherry-picked five-minute bids for wholesalers on windy days. The average retail price paid by consumers is what matters and the more wind we get, the higher it is. If wind farms “depressed” the price (rather than the consumer) there might be a country on Earth which has cheaper electricity since it built wind farms. There isn’t.

Tom Quirk looks at the erratic synchronicity of wind power of the national grid:

 Wind power supplied is an example of state by state wind correlations that reflect the reach of the weather systems in the Australian eastern region.

Total wind power contribution to the wholesale electricity market

Total wind farm output Australia, June 2019, Graph.

Total wind farm output Australia, June 2019 |    Data source

The capacity factor is the energy produced as a percentage of the maximum output of a wind farm. The total capacity factor is the weighted average of all wind farms.   The capacity factor is a useful way of showing the correlations in wind energy supply from the state regions.

The figures below show strong correlations for Tasmania, Victoria and South Australia with lesser correlation for New South Wales and Queensland.

Wind farms, Australia, combined output, June 2019. Graph.

Wind farms, Australia, combined output, June 2019.  Data source

There are 55 wind farms on the National Electricity Market in the Eastern States: 2 wind farms in Tasmania and Queensland,  22 in South Australia,  17 in Victoria,  and  12 in NSW. Those graphs for June 2019 for each state up close:

 NSW Wind powerVIC Wind power QLD Wind power   |  Tas Wind power  |  SA Wind power |

Sometimes all 55 wind farms are useless.

What about the birds?

Here’s one of the great whitewash lines of PR by the ABC:

UPC’s Mr Pollington says the company has been working with experts to ensure the wind farm is designed to minimise the impact on birds.

What does minimize even mean? They’ll make choices that kill less birds as long as it doesn’t cost much. The way to minimize the impact is to not build it in the first place.

Graham Lloyd, The Australian, reports on the terrible toll, and reveals useless forward estimates, Bob Brown, and minimization are:

…AGL’s Macarthur wind farm in Victoria is a good example of how expert reports can be wrong and conditions difficult to enforce.

Local farmer and bird lover Hamish Cumming has been raising the alarm for almost a decade. In September 2014, he wrote to all federal MPs: “The AGL Macarthur wind farm is slaughtering raptors at an alarming rate and no one seems to care, especially the Greens.” He asked Brown for help: “Dear Bob, I think the Greens in Victoria (and nationally) have forgotten what they are supposed to be protecting,” he wrote. “They refuse to help me make AGL adhere to their permit conditions just because they are a wind farm.” Cumming says he got no reply.

When the Macarthur wind farm was approved, AGL estimated it would kill two birds per turbine a year. However, post construction monitoring showed the project was killing 13.4 birds per turbine a year, more than six times the pre-construction estimate. The AGL permit application claimed a raptor kill of three a year across the wind farm, yet a post-construction report estimates a kill of 430 raptors a year, 30 per cent of bird deaths at the wind farm.

The experience in northern California is an 80 per cent decline in golden eagles numbers with none nesting near the Altamont facility, although it is a prime habitat.


In comments on the last Robbins Island thread one Prof Mike Tarburton suggested smaller wind turbines could save the vulnerable birds:

The best solution to this conflict is to use different types of Wind Turbines that would not kill birds. There are at least 4 types of smaller wind turbines on the internet that will not kill any birds. That they are smaller would mean that they would be easier to transport to Robbins island. One of the birds I research, the White-throated Needletail is the main species being killed at a wind farm near Robbins island, in spite of it being one of the fastest birds in the world. Because it flies all day it is going to pass many wind farms and risk being killed. Two weeks ago the Australian Government accepted my application and declared this species as Vulnerable.

Also near Robbins island, Short-tailed Shearwaters or Muttonbirds are also being killed by wind farms of the same type that are used across Australia. Which politician has shares in this company. Lets solve the problem by using the types that will generate cheap electricity and do not kill birds.

Prof Mike Tarburton.

Likely this is Prof. Mike Tarburton, “retired” from Dean of School of Science & Technology, Pacific Adventist University, Papua New Guinea. His website is  Swifts of the World.

Turbines are going to get bigger, so Prof Tarburton, bird specialist, is effectively telling us that things for birds are going to get much worse. Sadly, the awful bird toll will get more awful.

Smaller turbines might save the birds, which is a good thing, but they still make grid-wrecking, job-destroying electricity that makes the entire network more inefficient and more expensive. And presumably small turbines must be more expensive per Watt than large turbines or the profit making corporations wouldn’t be building the biggest ones they can get approval for.

Lets save birds and jobs and keep the heating and lights on.

The slaughter of birds is severe,
And from habitats some disappear,
When a single wind-farm,
Can do terrible harm,
Killing hundreds of raptors a year.

– Jo

h/t David B, Pat, George.

Data source     from Andrew Miskelly

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Denying 2000 years of the Medieval Warm Period, Little Ice Age on every continent

Here we go again. For five or so years believers didn’t really mention the . Too bruised by the embarrassment of Hockey Stick Zombie failures. But it’s an inconvenient era they have to rub out because none of the expert models can explain what caused it, and it’s hard to panic about same temperatures that Edward the Confessor survived with oxen and carts.

And it’s hard to call the modern warmth “man-made” if nature created something just like it 1,000 years ago.

Climate change: We haven’t experienced anything like this in the past 2,000 years

By Michael Collett, ABC, Environmental Copy and Paste Promoter

Climate scientists writing in the journal Nature have found there is no evidence for “globally coherent warm and cold periods” over the past 2,000 years prior to industrialisation.

That’s significant, because climate change deniers have sometimes pointed to epochs like the so-called “Little Ice Age” or “Medieval Warm Period” to argue that the current global warming is one among multiple similar global climate events.

But what the research actually shows is that other “peak warming and cooling events” over the past two millennia appear to have been localised, whereas the human-caused global warming observed over the past 150 years is unparalleled in its global scale (not to mention its absolute temperatures).

Who’s denying a million raw data points?

This new global temperature reconstruction by The Pages Consortium miraculously agrees with the models yet disagrees with hundreds of stalagmites, corals, ice cores, trees, lake sediments, mud from the ocean floor, pollen dust and 6,000 boreholes. It disagrees with the history of peoples like the Vikings. It disagrees with plants that grew and with trees that survived “above the snowline” that shouldn’t. This map shows just some temperature estimates from all around the world during medieval times relative to today.

World Map of temperatures and studies showing warming

Many of these papers come from Craig Idso at  who maintains the Medieval Warm Period Project. Back in 2009 when I did this map for the Skeptics Handbook II it was a first. Even then, there were already 442 separate research institutes from 41 countries which had published papers showing the MWP.*  Also thanks to Luning and Vahrenholt, and the team at NoTricksZone.

The latest paper is trying to claim that all these temperatures were not recorded at the same time and that it wasn’t global. But when proxies are combined it’s obvious it was. Even in our modern warm period, there are still warm and cold records being set at the same time. Medieval times were no different. It’s only by collating and combining many proxies that we can see “the average”.

18 proxies tell us the world was the same or warmer 1,000 years ago

Craig Loehle in 2008 used 18 non-tree-ring proxies which included Greenland borehole data, Conroy lake pollen, isotopes from Chesapeake Bay, Sargasso Sea, Caribbean Sea, results from caves in South Africa, the Swiss Alps, Sea Surface reconstructions from Norway, the northern Pacific and the South Atlantic and other proxies too.

Temperatures were higher 1000 years ago, and cooler 300 years ago. We started warming long before cars and powerstations were invented. There’s little correlation with CO2 levels.

Loehle et al 2008

Loehle 2008. Note the graph ends in 1935, not 1980.


 Here’s what 120 proxies from the Northern Hemisphere tell us

Ljungqvist et al combined 120 proxies of all different kinds and found this pattern for the last 12 centuries across the Northern Hemisphere.

120 Proxies, Medieval Warm Period, Ljundqvist, et al, Graph.

120 Proxies, Medieval Warm Period, Ljundqvist, et al, 2012.

Then there’s Christiansen et al 2012 who followed 32 proxies from the Northern Hemisphere back to the year 0 AD.

Christiansen et al, 2012. Graph, Medieval Warm PEriod, Little Ice Age.

Medieval Warm PEriod, Little Ice Age.

Here’s the Medieval Warm Period in China

China, Year 0 - 2000, MWP, LIA, Graph, paleohistory, climate change.

(Click to enlarge)   Quansheng Ge et al, 2017


Here’s the Medieval Warm Period in Antarctica, and the Little Ice Age:

Just in case you thought there wasn’t enough from the Southern Hemisphere.

Luning, 2019, Graph, Antarctica Temperatures, AD 0 - 2000, MWP, LIA.

60 sites across Antarctica were used to create this composite trend. – Lüning, S., M. Gałka, F. Vahrenholt (2019)

 Ocean heat content around Indonesia shows Medieval Warm Period and 2C warmth in Holocene

Rosenthal et al 2013 put out quite the zinger of a paper. They’ve reconstructed the temperature of the water flowing out of the Pacific to the Indian Ocean over the last 10,000 years and as deep as 900m. The Indonesian Throughflow  is pretty significant in global ocean currents.

Indonesian Water, Temperature, 1000AD, Roman Times, Midieval warm period. Graph.

Figure 4.  Holocene changes in Pacific Ocean heat content measured as it swings past Indonesia on the way to the Indian Ocean. Reconstructed anomalies are calculated relative to the reference period of 1965 to 1970 C

Clearly that water was warmer 1000 years ago than it was circa 1970. It was even warmer again in the Holocene.


3000 hot and cold years in a South African cave

South African Cave last 3000 yearsSouth African Cave last 3000 years

Source: Holmgren 2001. See also here and here in African reconstructions.

The Southern Ocean 7000 year record also shows long term cooling as well as the Roman Warm Period.

Then there’s 10,000 mostly hotter years in Greenland

No paleoclimate discussion is complete without GISP:

Greenland GISP2 ice core - last 10,000 years.

UPDATE: This graph shows the ice-core data up until 1855. The last 150 years (1705 to 1855) are highlighted in red to show the warming as the Earth began coming out of the LIA.

6,000 Boreholes show it was global

Just some of the places these boreholes have been dug. They stick a thermometer down a hole, and all over the world there is a pattern that repeats as temperature changes on the surface travel gradually down through the rocks. Sure, the resolution is bare bones. The data is “smoothed”. We can’t use boreholes to know if things were warmer than today and we can’t tell how long ago that big last surge in warmth was, but where boreholes come into their own is in showing us just how global that last big warm spell was.


Boreholes are handy because they assess land areas that have few other proxies.


Below is the latest iteration of a graph that went through a savage evolution from 1997 – 2008. What stayed constant was that boreholes always showed a medieval warm period and a little ice age, that is, except for the time Huang et al “lost” nearly 20,000 years of data.

Huang and Pollack 2008: Their latest boreholes published study


In the graph above, if the assumption about the speed of heat flow is shifted to line up the coolest point with other proxies in 1680 and the warmest point to somewhere around 1000 – 1200 the amplitude would increase (see the jaw dropping 1997 original paper which claimed it was much warmer in medieval times).

These papers are by no means the only important ones. There are so many others…

So go tell the world — everywhere we look the world was hotter and colder in the last 1000 years, the last 10,000 years and the last billion.

h/t George, David B, Original Steve, Peter Fitzroy.


Climate data has long verified,
That M.W.P. and L.I.A. were worldwide,
When a CO2 dearth,
All over the Earth,
To the warming and cooling applied.
    –  Ruairi


Keep reading  →

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The pause in global warming shows CO2 may be *more* powerful! Say hello to Hyperwarming Wierdness.

A new Nature paper claims that pauses and cooling phases mean C02 may cause more warming than anyone thought.

Unskeptical Scientists Trust ModelsPause Excuse #431

It’s all so obvious. If researchers start with models that don’t work, they can find anything they look for — even abject nonsense which is the complete opposite of what the models predicted.

Holy Simulation! Let’s take this reasoning and run with it  — in the unlikely event we actually get relentless rising temperatures, that will imply that the climate sensitivity of CO2 is lower. Can’t see that press release coming…

Nature has sunk so low these days it’s competing with The Onion.

The big problem bugging believers was that global warming paused, which no model predicted, and which remains unexplained still, despite moving goal posts, searching in data that doesn’t exist, and using error bars 17 times larger than the signal. The immutable problem is that energy shalt not be created nor destroyed, so The Pause still matters even years after it stopped pausing. The empty space still shows the models don’t understand the climate — CO2 was supposed to be heating the world, all day, everyday. Quadrillions of Joules have to go somewhere, they can’t just vanish, but models don’t know where they went. If we can’t explain the pause, we can’t explain the cause, and the models can’t predict anything.

In studies like these, the broken model is not a bug, it’s a mandatory requirement — if these models actually worked, it wouldn’t be as easy to produce any and every conclusion that an unskeptical scientist could hope to “be surprised” by.

The true value of this study, if any, is in 100 years time when some psychology PhD student will be able to complete an extra paragraph on the 6th dimensional flexibility of human rationalization and confirmation bias.

Busted climate models can literally prove anything. The more busted they are, the better.

More sensitive climates are more variable climates

University of Exeter

A decade without any global warming is more likely to happen if the climate is more sensitive to carbon dioxide emissions, new research has revealed.

A decade without warming is even more likely to happen if CO2 is irrelevant. Did the experts forget to mention that?

A team of scientists from the University of Exeter and the Centre of Ecology and Hydrology in the UK has conducted pioneering new research into why both surges and slowdowns of warming take place.

Using sophisticated climate models the team, led by PhD student Femke Nijsse, discovered if the climate was more sensitive to COconcentration also displayed larger variations of warming over a decade.

When combined with information from simulations without any carbon dioxide increases, the authors were able to assess the natural variability of each climate model.

Thus they calculated the natural variability of an imaginary world.

The research is published this week in Nature Climate Change.

Femke Nijsse, from the University of Exeter, said: “We were surprised to see that even when we took into account that sensitive climate models warm more over the last decades of the 20th century, these sensitive models were still more likely to have short periods of cooling.”

Keep reading  →

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China is warming fastest where the cities are, not where the models predicted – classic UHI

The biggest changes in temperature (“divergence” in dark red brown Fig 6) occurred where the most people lived (blue dots). In the 60 years to 2010 China was reported to have warmed by 0.79 ± 0.10 °C. However Scafetta et al calculate at most, China could have experienced a real warming of only 0.46 ± 0.13 °C.

Somehow the combined might and supercomputers at NOAA, NASA, Hadley and the Bureau of Met experts all missed this.

It’s another third of a degree gone from the Glorious CO2 Narrative. Just like that.

China, Scafetta 2019, UHI, Urban Heat Island Effect. Graph.

Fig. 6. Map of the divergence (ΔTMin − ΔTMax) between the warmings registered by the minimum and maximum temperature records (CRU TS4) between 1945 and 1954 and 2005–2014. The cyan dots indicate the 200 most populated cities in China according to the Free World City Database. (White regions over India and the ocean indicate missing data).

Is there a  more perfect nation to study the Urban Heat Island effect than China?

The worlds most populous nation has made a blistering transformation in two decades. As recently as 1995 the population was 75% rural. Now it’s approaching 60% urban. Shenzhen, which is near Hong Kong, grew from 3000 people in 1950 to more than 10 million in 2010. Around Beijing, thousands of towns have been built in a networked carpet, each a mere 2km apart (zoom in on Google satellite view). The stations in these areas are effectively not rural anymore.

Prof Nicola Scafetta and Shenghui Ouyang wondered how this massive growth affected the temperatures. They discovered the regions that warmed the fastest were also the largest population centers. Proving the warming might be “man-made” but nearly half the warming is due to heated concrete and all the assorted infrastructure and industry around thermometers. That part is not CO2.

There would be more CO2 produced from those population centres too, but we all know that given five minutes CO2 will split for Tahiti or Siberia, or anywhere. In any case, Scaffeta et al compared what the top greenhouse models driven by CO2 predicted. And lo, the models were totally  wrong. The CMIP5 set projected that CO2 would warm all of China roughly equally.

The research duo looked at the minima, the maxima, the seasonal and monthly patterns, and in pretty much every case, the warmth follows the same pattern we’d expect if it was caused by human industry. The minimums rose more than the maximums. The biggest warming effect comes in the coolest part of the day and in the coolest half of the year –  and it’s a toss up whether China has even warmed at all since 1940. The nights are hotter, but the days are colder than they used to be — inasmuch as anyone has any idea at all what the temperature would really have been.


The Climate models (CMIP5) have barely any ability to predict future maxima and minima…

China, Scafetta 2019, UHI, Urban Heat Island Effect. Graph.

Fig. 5. (Left) Tmax and (Right) Tmin. The maps show the 2005–2014 mean value minus 1945–1954 mean value. (top) Temperature observations (CRU TS4) and (bottom) full CMIP5 GCM mean ensemble simulation. The maps are centered over China. The hatching represents areas where the signal is smaller than one standard deviation of natural variability (e.g. the value is nearly zero).

 Compare the models to the measurements:

And notice how hot China was in the daytime in 1940? I don’t see how that can last.

China, Scafetta 2019, UHI, Urban Heat Island Effect. Graph.

:Fig. 9. [A] CRU TS4 Tmax and Tmin near-surface annual average temperature records. [B] CMIP5 maximum, mean and minimum near-surface annual ensemble average temperature records. Region [112°–120°E:32°–40°N]. The red segments indicate the mean values, T1 and T2, in the 1945–1954 and 2005–2014 decades.

Presumably China in the 1940′s will start cooling soon like most other places in the world have.

The population doubled, doubled, and doubled again

Beijing that increased from 1.7 million in 1950 to 18.4 million in 2015. It grew by about 11 times in 65 years.


China, Scafetta 2019, UHI, Urban Heat Island Effect. Graph.

ig. 12. [A] Population density in China (2000). Mapping prepared by Beijing City Lab ( [B] Urban agglomeration population increase in China from 1950 to 1990, from 1990 to 2015 and the projected population increase between 2015 and 2035. Data from United Nations 2018.


Thanks to Nicola Scafetta. See also posts on Tallblokes and Paul Homewood’s site Notalotofpeopleknowthat.


Nicola Scafetta, Shenghui Ouyang: Detection of UHI bias in China climate network using Tmin and Tmax surface temperature divergence. Global and Planetary Change, Volume 181, October 2019, 102989.
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Forget Climate “apartheid”: to increase human rights we should emit more CO2

More Fake News to scare the kiddies

Communication pollution

“Climate Apartheid” is just the latest round of Thesaurus-Torture, whereupon people with no clue about anything make up a meaningless buzz-phrase to tell us we are about to lose something we never had.

The Big-Gov-PR-Generator randomly combines climate with any bad word in the dictionary then post hoc rationalizes it to pretend they’ve discovered something. By default they also delete 100,000 years of history. Eons of slavery, genocide and war simply never happened.

Why do we pay a UN Expert to tell us inanities and stoke the fires?

UN report warns coming ‘climate apartheid’ will split Earth between ‘those who escape’ and ‘those who will suffer’

 UN “expert” says human rights may not survive.

May not survive? The only places in the world with any human rights are the ones with massive emissions of CO2.

The kindest thing we could do for any nation is to help them use their own resources and produce more CO2. It will increase their quality of life more than nearly any other thing we could do bar from making them a protectorate.

In the Handy-guide for Tyrants and Tin pots, surely Step 2 is: tap primal emotions — in this case “fear” and “jealously”

A particularly dire report from the United Nations Human Rights Council has upped the ante in the fight against climate change, warning that a potential “climate apartheid” could fracture the global population, splitting the planet between the wealthy and the rest of the world who will be “left to suffer.”

It combines 100 other dubious studies to produce a new dimension of nonsense:

The report, published on June 25 and written by U.N. human rights and poverty specialist Philip Alston, combines the work of more than 100 other studies and reports. It goes into particular detail about what will happen if there is too great of a reliance on the private sector to combat the changing climate.

 And the answer is always “more government”. Because the entire global private sector is just like GoldmanSachs, right?

“Rather than helping the world adapt to climate change, privatizing basic services and social protection may be a form of maladaptation,” Alston wrote in the report. ”When hurricane Sandy wreaked havoc in New York in 2012, stranding low-income and vulnerable New Yorkers without access to power and healthcare, the Goldman Sachs headquarters was protected by tens of thousands of its own sandbags and power from its generator.”

UN logo, full socialist flavour
The mythical climate-apartheid is coming. Sure. The poor, after all, have always had more ability to withstand the elements and pick nice safe places to live. Presumably rich people got trapped in castles or something, eh?

Alston likened it to a coming “climate apartheid,” where the wealthy are able to mitigate some of the potentially catastrophic effects, such as food insecurity, disease and death, and the poor, “who have contributed the least to emissions and have the least capacity to react, will be the most harmed.”

The answer is to help everyone get rich, not to “get the rich” instead.

It’s all another UN analytical train-wreck — if only we put up enough solar panels and gave the government power over everything, then we’d all be happy together, and have equal incomes? It’s just the Soviet Union on Solar — and we know how that will work out. Same collapse, just faster. Death by double-starvation instead by Gulag. Some “progress”.

The UN report by Philip Alston supports the Paris agreement — paradoxically encapsulating all the most useless, toxic and harmful solutions, destroying wealth, reducing CO2 and, based on the last million years of history, guaranteed to reduce human rights.


h/t to Climate Depot

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Peter Ridd update: James Cook University wasted $630,000 defending the Bureaucrat Rulers of Science, and plans to appeal

Peter Ridd

The battle continues for Peter Ridd.

James Cook Uni lost every single point against Peter Ridd. Today at the penalty hearing we find out they plan to appeal.

The fake fish uni has learnt nothing:

Charlie Peel, The Australian

James Cook University risks contempt rap for response to verdict

James Cook University is poised to appeal against the Federal Court finding that its sacking of physics professor Peter Ridd was unlawful.

JCU’s response was so far from the mark, apparently Justice Vasta is considering whether to refer it to the Federal Court Marshall. Vasta said the statement attributed to Chris Cocklin of JCU was “almost contemptuous”.

The IPA, bless them, filed an FOI to find out how much money was burnt in the quest, and says it’s high time JCU  stops:

Gideon Rozner: The details of a freedom of information request lodged by the Institute of Public Affairs with James Cook University and released today reveal the University has already spent at least $630,000 on legal fees in the Dr Peter Ridd case.

“The very fact that an Australian university is willing to force the weight of an entire administration backed by taxpayer funds to stifle an academic’s freedom of speech sends a massive chilling effect to any academic engaging in public debate in Australia,” said IPA Director of Policy, Gideon Rozner.

“James Cook University’s shameful actions prove without doubt there is a crisis of free speech at Australian Universities.

“It is staggering to think that after the Federal Circuit Court ruled on every point in Dr Ridd’s favour, JCU is contemplating an appeal.

“Australian universities receive billions of dollars in taxpayer funding for the purpose of free intellectual inquiry. Now JCU wants to go to a higher court to prove it can shut down the freedom of speech on academic issue by one of its professors. It is outrageous. Taxpayers fund JCU to do education and research, not engage in vexatious litigation against its own staff.

The IPA media release.

It’s easy to stop JCU from behaving like this

Education Minister Dan Tehan or PM Scott Morrison could fix this in five minutes. All they have to do is tell JCU they’ll get no more grant money until the institute guarantees free speech and shows accountability for the people who flagrantly wasted over half a million dollars.

JCU grant money is better spent elsewhere. All the research they produce is now tainted and effectively worthless– no matter what any Professor says, everyone knows they are not free to criticize other staff, or procedures, or point out flaws. They’re scared to use their email addresses. We’ll never know what any JCU researcher is holding back.

JCU is the text-book example of what happens when government funding strangles science. The people in charge of JCU’s “science” department — deciding what “the consensus will be” are the administrators, not the academics.

This is not a one off. JCU has a pattern of evicting, blackbanning, and ousting people who disagree with the bureaucrats pet fashions (vale, Bob Carter!). In this culture, more funding means more strangling. So just stop.

h/t Jennifer Marohasy.

The Peter Ridd story:


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Part 3 of the Apollo 11 series


Part 3 in the hugely popular, politically incorrect, Apollo 11 series from Daily Wire as we count down to the 50th Anniversary.


I was surprised to hear that Apollo 10 made it to within ten miles of the moon. The lunar module was launched, started descent, then had to stop and return. It was all according to plan, and apparently they were so afraid the astronauts would go that extra ten miles that NASA only “half filled their tank”. They didn’t have enough fuel to do the landing and return.

The Youtube direct URL:


 UPDATE: Stephen sends in another Apollo 11 site — it’s replaying the audio and transcripts for the whole mission in “real time” with a 50 year delay. 240 hours of space-to-ground audio!

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50% of Americans don’t want to spend *even one more dollar* on renewables

Who wants to pay more for electricity?

All around the world conservative politicians are afraid to campaign against the cost of renewables. So here comes yet another survey showing a huge voter group sits there unrecognized, invisible, waiting for someone to vote for.

The news from the Center for Climate Change Communication, George Mason University:

Who is willing to pay more for renewable energy?

In two recent national surveys of American adults, we asked how much more per month, if anything, people would be willing to pay to get their electricity from 100% renewable sources. Nearly half of Americans (47%) reported that they were willing to pay more, while 50% said $0.

It’s a devastating result. Think about the fantasy they were being asked to put a price on — on offer was the mythical golden goose of  “100% renewable energy”. It doesn’t exist (unless you count hydroelectricity). Even so, what was that fantastical creature worth? For half of Americans — nothing.

Instead, the Centre for Climate Communication could have put a more realistic price on “100% renewable purity”, and asked how many Americans were willing to pay that exorbitant sum — it might be 1%. Might be less. (Can’t think why the Centre for Climate Change Communications didn’t want to find that out…)

They were expecting so much more:

In our December 2018 Energy in the American Mind report, we found that a bipartisan majority (85%) of American registered voters support requiring electric utilities to transition to renewable energy, even though only 38% think that wind and solar cost less than electricity from coal. This suggests that many Americans may be willing to pay more to get their electricity from renewable sources.

The inconsistencies layer like a supersize lasagne. 63% of Americans know wind and solar costs more than coal. Fully 85%  say they want “climate action”  — they want  to make it law, they know it will cost, and they want someone else to pay for it.

The payment paradox is the same all around the world. People know what they are supposed to say, that renewables are like apple-pie and motherhood and good, good, good. But hardly anyone wants to fork over the cash. But ultimately, if the government legislates  a more expensive energy source, someone has to foot the bill. There are two ways to reconcile the divergent figures: one, that bullying keeps people from admitting that they don’t believe to random pollsters that call in the night; or two, that western education has duped the masses into thinking that the government or companies have some magical pot of money that can cover the cost.

Who wants to pay –  The young and easily led  (Liberal Democrats)

The old, wise and careful are much less willing to pay for weather-changing sorcery.

How telling that the prime deciding factor for “paying up” is politics, not income. (Black-symbols, right, versus green symbols, left).

Climate polling, renewable cost, USA, 2019. Willing to pay?


The other predictors are age and education. And given the dime-a-dozen nature of modern degrees, education is partly a proxy for age anyway — there just aren’t that many post-docs in their eighties.

My hypothesis — that climate payments are a meaningless fashion statement — holds up well against the data. Fashion always counts most in youth, and in the inner city, university, left wing arty sector. Everyone wants to be seen to pay, but no one cares if the money really gets there.

Even those willing to pay are not willing to pay much:

The half that were willing to pay for the Golden Climate Goose were offering figures like $1 – $30 per month which is only $12 – $400 annually.

 Overall and on average, Americans are willing to pay an additional $16.25 per month for renewable energy. About one in six (17%) say they would pay between $1 and $10 more, while 15% are willing to pay between $11 and $30, and 14% are willing to pay between $31 and $200 more. Among those who are willing to pay at least some amount more per month, the average is $33.72 per month.

Note the misleading average in the first sentence? The average American is absolutely not willing to pay $16 per month extra. Given that 50% want to pay nothing more, and 17% want to pay $1 – $10 per month, that means 67% of Americans are offering to fork out a lot less than ten dollars.

Cling to that fantasy

The Climate Centre says none of this matters anyhow because their own disappointing study is irrelevant:

It is important to note that public willingness to pay more for renewable energy is likely to become less relevant in coming years, because the costs of generating electricity from renewable energy sources have been rapidly declining . Increasingly, Americans will not have to decide if they are willing to pay more for renewable energy. Rather, they will likely be able to pay less for renewable energy. Because nearly half of Americans are already willing to pay more for renewable energy, we expect that consumer demand and positive sentiments will increase as renewable energy prices fall.

If renewables are so competitive why do we need government funded Climate Centres to ask how much extra the punters will pay?

It takes a large team to sell those white elephants.


 Gustafson, A., Goldberg, M., Rosenthal, S., Kotcher, J., Maibach, E., & Leiserowitz, A. (2019). Who is willing to pay more for renewable energy? Yale University and George Mason University. New Haven, CT: Yale Program on Climate Change Communication.

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The worst drought in history viewed through carbo-phobic glasses: ABC misses the obvious

The obvious headline:

“Worst drought in history was 100 years ago, nothing to do with CO2″

The Carbophobic headline:

Drought of 1891 to 1903 reconstructed shows today’s conditions likely to have more devastating effects

Indoctrinated ABC copy-writers can’t see anything other than future doom and a chance to advertise the government religion.  Figure that the Australian GDP per capita is 13 times larger now than in 1900. We have phones, planes, antibiotics, air-conditioning, satellites, and super computers, yet somehow we wouldn’t cope as well if the drought hit now?

It’s great, for a change, to see the ABC reporting on historic Australian extremes, and the BOM researching our amazing documentary history, shame they miss the bleeding obvious.

By Nikolai Beilharz, ABC Enviro-propaganda Unit.

A reconstruction of the Federation drought has found that if it were to occur again today, its effects would likely be even more devastating in some areas of the country.

The ‘once in a century drought’, which went from 1891 to 1903, caused an ecosystem collapse affecting more than a third of the country. The drought was one of the world’s worst recorded ‘megadroughts’, which at its peak saw much of the country get less than 40 per cent of its annual rainfall, with 1902 the driest year on record.

Isn’t “global warming” meant to increase rainfall?

Panic, Australian rainfall has increased since 1900.

An increase in rain across the year and the nation doesn’t prove droughts will be lower, but it’s surely relevant. Figure how it makes the risk of a long widespread drought worse?

If the ABC represented the taxpayers, they would train staff to ask reasonable questions. Beilharz would have pressed the BOM to mention long term rainfall and drought trends, he would have pointed out that we are vastly better equipped to deal with any climate extreme, and he also would have asked about studies of previous megadroughts. Instead he’s a paid parrot.

Megadroughts have always occurred in Australia and we are lucky the weather this century has been so kind.

[The Vance et al 2014] study of Law Dome Ice cores tells us that droughts are common in Australia, and that there appears to be eight mega-droughts over the last thousand years, including one that lasted a whopping 39 years from 1174- 1212AD. By their reckoning the 12th Century in Australia was a shocker with 80% of it spent in drought conditions. Things weren’t so bad from 1260 – 1860, at least, as far as they can tell. The researchers are convinced theirs is the first millennial-length Australian drought record.

The ABC even reported on the 39 year megadrought at the time. Of course, it didn’t show our climate was worse without “CO2″ — it only mattered for water management policies.

One day maybe the ABC and BOM will serve the nation instead of themselves. But not while Big-Government funds them both, and the voters get no accountability. A “tick a box” option on our tax returns would change that — these agencies would need to impress the people instead of the politicians.

Give us a real free market please. Who would buy this propaganda if they had a choice?


Vance et al, Interdecadal Pacifi c variability and eastern Australian mega-droughts over the last millennium (2014) American Geophysical Union, doi: 10.1002/2014GL062447

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Apollo 11: The inside story of the glorious technical mastery, the risks, the leap

For those who want to immerse themselves in the engineering masterpiece of the Apollo 11 mission, Burt Rutan recommends this documentary series. A whole fascinating hour each. Burt Rutan is an aerospace engineer who has designed 46 aircraft, received six honorary doctoral degrees and hundreds of awards. If these documentaries can keep him interested …

Hail the brilliant technical minds that triumphed and the brave men who got there.

Only 12 men have walked on the moon and three out of four still alive are skeptics. Buzz Aldrin is an outspoken skeptic, as are other astronauts Harrison Schmidt, and Charles Duke. So is Australian born Phil Chapman (support crew, Apollo 14) and Walter Cunningham (Apollo 7).  Burt Rutan too, of course. 

Remember a time when NASA could achieve great things…

Part I: We choose to go to the moon: Hosted by Bill Whittle

Part II: The clock is running


Burt Rutan says Part 3 and 4 are on the way.

The URLs:     

Rutan warns that Google or Youtube searches may not find the series. Apparently Bill Whittle is too politically incorrect for them.  At this point the Google search works with “Apollo 11: What we saw”. But “Apollo 11 youtube” is a fail — five screens of nothing. Spread the word.

There is information here you won’t hear on the Lamestream.

This post is for Jim Simpson and the OTC team at Paddington who helped transmit the moon-landing. They are organizing events in Australia for the Apollo 11 Anniversary, especially for the veteran Engineers, Technicians and Managers.

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Former Greens leader Bob Brown campaigns against wind farm

Do we need wind farms to save the world or not? Not, says Bob Brown.

Robbins Island, Satellite view.

Robbins Island, North West Tasmania

People can have sleep and health and their views destroyed, but that didn’t matter til a farmer on a remote island off Tasmania made a deal to build one of the largest wind “farms” in the world.

Graham Lloyd, The Australian

Former Greens leader and veteran activist Bob Brown is campaigning to stop a $1.6 billion wind farm development in Tasmania because it will spoil the view and kill birds.

The proposed Robbins Island wind farm in Tasmania’s northwest will be one of the world’s biggest, with up to 200 towers measuring 270m high from ground to blade tip.

He’s written a letter protesting about the view:

Despite the criticisms levelled at former prime minister Tony Abbott and treasurer Joe Hockey for describing wind turbines as “ugly”, Dr Brown said the Robbins Island plan was, visually, a step too far. “Mariners will see this hairbrush of tall towers from 50km out to sea and elevated landlubbers will see it, like it or not, from greater distances on land,” Dr Brown said. “Its eye-catchiness will divert from every coastal scene on the western Bass Strait coastline.”

So Tony Abbott was right. It will be good to hear that apology.

After millions of birds bats and who-knows-what-else has been killed, now he cares:

In his letter on the wind farm, Dr Brown wrote: “Besides the impact on the coastal scenery, wind turbines kill birds. Wedge-tailed eagle and white-bellied sea eagles nest and hunt on the island. Swift parrots and orange-bellied parrots traverse the island on their migrations.”

The birds are just a “beside”.

Reap what you sow — a belief based on superstition with no underlying principles means sooner or later Greens reveal their inner hypocrite.

The ABC reported on this project in Dec 2017. The industrial wind plant was only going ahead if they could also build a second interconnector across the Bass Strait, something the company said it would pay for if it got approval. For some strange reason the Tasmanian Government was spending $20m investigating the business case first…

Why are taxpayers worried about a business case if the company was the one risking the money?

Keep reading  →

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Weekend Unthreaded

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