JoNova

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


The Skeptics Handbook

Think it has been debunked? See here.

The Skeptics Handbook II

Climate Money Paper


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Australian Environment Conference Oct 20 2012


micropace


GoldNerds

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



Want to stop climate change? Happy to see black babies die?

How the concern for the worlds poor hurts. The pain! Ian D’oherty skewers the fake compassion. As I said in Global Bullies Want Your Money, How many people would you kill in order to save us from a theoretical “modeled” threat? Would that be thousands? Could it be more?

Could be… Let’s count the ways wasting money on climate change betrays sick? Indur Goklany estimates that biofuels lead to nearly 200,000 deaths in 2010 alone. Is that enough?  Warming kills less people than cooling, but let’s demand money to stop the warming. Poor climate predictions lead to real deaths, so why not shut down polite debate before it begins? Jail those deniers!

Researching pointless things will undoubtedly mean some people die who could have been saved — (never ever count the opportunity cost, unless you’re talking about how much funding green programs could have got). Fake markets feeds corruption, farmers die, rivers run dry and some are left homeless, what does a caring person do, call the fake market a “free” market and ask for more. Who hurts the most when cheap energy gets more expensive, not the rich doctors wives who can afford subsidized solar (see point 4).

Skeptics [...]

Australia managed the mining boom so well we can’t afford cancer treatments

Our award-winning treasurer is forcing the nation to spend $8.9 billion on wind-turbines, to generate electricity which will be3- 4 times more expensive than coal powered electricity, probably won’t reduce CO2 at all, and which definitely won’t change the weather. Victoria’s windfarms have saved virtually no coal from being burnt. South Australian windfarms have saved 4% of their rated capacity in fossil fuels at a cost of $1,484 per ton.

MORE than $8.9 billion will be spent importing wind turbines because of the blowout in the Gillard government’s renewable energy target, providing few if any benefits to local industry, one of the nation’s biggest electricity generators warns.

The Australian can also reveal that a new Frontier Economics analysis commissioned by Macquarie Generation has found that the renewable energy target could slash the value of coal-fired power stations by between $11.3bn and $17.3bn – potentially having a greater impact than the carbon tax, which includes industry compensation.

In a new submission to the Climate Change Authority, Macquarie Generation said that 2500 wind turbines – costing $12.7bn – will be needed to comply with a scheme that is set to blow out the amount of renewable energy in the system to [...]

Carbon trading: may save a coal deposit, but farmers die, rivers run dry, and some are left homeless and poor

Perhaps this insurance costs too much?

Between Jan 2010 and March 2011, allegedly, 23 Honduran farmers have been murdered by the owners of a UN-accredited palm oil plantation.

“EU carbon trading rocked by mass killings”

At issue are the reported murders of 23 local farmers who tried to recover land, which they say was illegally sold to big palm oil plantations, such as Grupo Dinant, in a country scarred by widespread human rights abuses.

In July, a report by an International Fact Finding Mission was presented to the European Parliament’s Human Rights Sub-committee, alleging that 23 peasants, one journalist and his partner, had all been murdered in the Bajo Aguán region, between January 2010 and March 2011.

The deaths were facilitated by the “direct involvement of private security guards from some of the local companies who are complicit with police and military officials,” the report said.

In some cases it cited “feigned accidents” in which peasants were run over by security guards working for two named palm oil businessmen. In other cases, the farmers were simply shot, or “disappeared”.

Strangely, though the report was released in July, it’s become news now that a Green MEP and EU policy makers announced [...]

Insurance that kills

A helicopter arrives at the scene of the crashFrom Metro.co.uk

The great Piers Corbyn popped in when I wrote the first post about the 10:10 video. His comment on that thread is the most popular (rated by thumbs up) of any of the 38,000 comments on this site (110 thumbs up). This below is that comment, which fits with my recent theme of What’s the harm in acting?

For those who don’t know, Piers uses solar factors and writes long range weather forecasts and does it with uncanny accuracy — he predicted the Copenhagen Blizzards a month before Copenhagen. His site is Weather Action. He’s so good at predicting atmospheric action that over 12 years, he won so many bets on the weather the bookies gave up and begged him to stop. (The odds were set by the UK met office.)

He discusses the often unseen but deadly costs of bad decisions. In this case, Natasha Jade Paton might still be alive today if authorities had sought better advice than that from deeply flawed climate models. Piers warned them they would run out of road salt.

There are thousands of people who think that “taking insurance” is like paying [...]

What’s the harm in acting anyway?

Saving energy or stopping pollution is a good thing. What’s the danger in acting now?

We can save energy and stop real pollution without setting up a whole financial bureaucratic system based on “thin air”. The wholly unnecessary trading system feeds the sharks of finance with more money and power. We waste blood, sweat and tears and encourage cheats. We reward fraud and foster corruption.

When we trade real things, people who cheat get caught easily. They can’t get away with it for long. But in the quasi world of meaningless permits-for-air, the only limit to cheating is “what they can get away with”.

For example: Carbon credits paid to China to build hydro dams end up helping bankers buy yachts, and feed the mafiosi in China. They evict homeowners, don’t pay them enough compensation, flood their valleys and commit these people to homelessness or more slavery to bankers through mortgages.

Sure, some useful outcomes might occur. But hoping we get lucky is not “planning”. It’s policy-by-accident. If solar energy, say, is a good idea all on its own, we don’t need to invent fake reasons to force people to use more of it.

We could for example tax [...]

Pub questions

From the first Skeptics Handbook (p 14-15). The very short answers to questions you might get in a bar, or in the media tent at the UNFCCC. Point 1 below was the single most popular riposte from supporters of the greenhouse theory at COP 13 in Bali.

1. How can so many scientists be wrong? Most scientists are not wrong, but they’re not studying the central question either. Instead they’re researching the effects of warming — not the causes. Whether orangutans in Borneo are facing habitat loss tells us nothing of what drives the weather. Likewise: wind-farm efficiency, carbon sequestration, and insect-borne epidemics. Warm weather changes these things, but these things don’t change the weather. Consensus proves nothing. It takes only one scientist to prove a theory wrong. Theories fit the facts or they don’t. Instead of saying “Which side has more PhDs?” a better question is “Where’s the evidence?” Once upon a time, the masses thought the world was flat, that no machine could fly, that the sun went ‘round the Earth.

The only thing we know for sure about climate change is that big government-funded committees [...]