JoNova

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


Handbooks


Advertising


Australian Speakers Agency



GoldNerds

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



The Skeptics Handbook

Think it has been debunked? See here.

The Skeptics Handbook II

Climate Money Paper



Archives

Books

Your car causes volcanoes (and volcanoes release CO2)

Oh. My. Lord. Keep the car in the garage.

Climate Change Could Increase Volcano Eruptions

Dr Graeme Swindles, from the School of Geography at Leeds, said: “Climate change caused by humans is creating rapid ice melt in volcanically active regions. In Iceland, this has put us on a path to more frequent volcanic eruptions.”

The study examined Icelandic volcanic ash preserved in peat deposits and lake sediments and identified a period of significantly reduced volcanic activity between 5,500 and 4,500 years ago. This period came after a major decrease in global temperature, which caused glacier growth in Iceland.

The findings, published today in the journal Geology, found there was a time lag of roughly 600 years between the climate event and a noticeable decrease in the number of volcanic eruptions. The study suggests that perhaps a similar time lag can be expected following the more recent shift to warmer temperatures.

Read more at University of Leeds

It’s amazing what you can achieve when you take a simple correlation and run with it.

Meanwhile in New Zealand, Mt Ruapehu is emitting high levels of CO2

Look out, we may set off a deadly volcano spiral [...]

Climate change will make Bearded Dragons dumber

Young Bearded Dragon worried about falling SAT scores.

Ominously, cute Australian Bearded Dragons (Pogona vitticeps) may grow up to be more stupid if their eggs are incubated in a hotter world.

Bearded Dragons Are Dumber Because of Climate Change

–National Geographic

This has all kinds of implications.

Obviously, it follows that Victorian Bearded Dragons must be smarter than their Queensland cousins. I can see future papers coming on the IQ gradient of dragons down the East Coast of Australia.

Secondly, with this handy simple relationship between IQ and temperature we can infer the entire intellectual history of Bearded Dragons as the climate fluctuated: including the Peak Holocene Dolt Era and the Glacial Genius Maximum.

 

From National Geographic

” The researchers took a single clutch of 13 eggs and split them into two groups. Seven eggs were incubated at a toasty 30°C (86°F), while the other six were incubated at a milder 27°C (81°F). There was an almost even mix of males and females.

Ahh. The cause of lower IQs may be not a hotter world, but a hotter artificial incubator. The message in this paper is Don’t leave artificial incubators lying around [...]

Climate change will make your Autumns colorless. Darkness is coming.

Put out a press release! Climate change may make color photos turn black and white:

Yale, climate connections: Climate change could dull fall’s spectacular colors

No, but seriously, the situation is so dire that we might not be sure when peak color in fall will occur.

Yingying Xie, a post-doc at the University of Buffalo, says global warming is bringing changes to the region’s fall colors. In general, warmer temperatures cause leaves to turn color later in the season.

But changes in frost and moisture levels, and stresses like drought, heavy rain, and extreme heat can also affect the timing of peak fall color.

Xie: “Climate extremes may bring pretty high uncertainty.”

Peak color may split timing: Color clash coming

If there be droughts, the ash and birch red leaves will occur at a different time to oaks and beeches. Imagine forests with red and green at the same time?

One reason is that different tree species react to climate stresses in different ways. In her research, Xie found that drought caused ash and birch trees to change color earlier than usual. But it made oaks and beeches change color later.

[...]

Aussies eating junk to get better weather, old coal plant increases 73,000% in value in two years

Funny things happening today in Australia:

Australians are cutting back on Fruit and Veges to pay electricity bills:

Since eating raw fruit and vege is associated with lower mortality, efforts to stop people dying of climate change in 2100 may be killing people today:

Australians are cutting back on basic things like fresh fruit and vegies in order to keep the lights on with the National Debt Helpline taking 14,000 calls in September — a record for the month, and up 14 per cent on the same time last year.

Dying stranded coal plant increases in value by 73,000% in 2 years:

The NSW government sold Vale Point power for $1m two years ago. It’s now valued at $730m:

In November 2015, the NSW Government offloaded Vales Point Power Station — an old, polluting coal-fired plant on the shores of Lake Macquarie — for $1 million.

Last week,… Sunset Power quietly released its latest financial reports — revaluing the Vales Point Power Plant at a cool $730 million.

Over the past year, Vale Points’ owners gained $380 million from electricity sales from the power station, compared to $270 million for energy generated [...]

Corals survive 542m years of supervolcano, asteroids, 125m sea level change only to go extinct any year now

Will Corals Survive?, asks a group of international scientists.

Corals first appeared 540 million years ago, but having made it through supervolcanoes, mass extinctions, and an asteroid impact equivalent to 10 billion Hiroshima A-bombs, it’s now likely they will be wiped out because a trace gas has risen from 20% up to 25% of levels common for half of the last 300 million years.

Source: www.geocraft, Scotese and Berner 2001

Having made it through the volatile last 65 million years, and multiple ice ages where the oceans rose and fell by as much as 125m repeatedly, it will be tragic if the current man-made warming phase wipes them out. According to one thousand tide gauges the worlds oceans are relentlessly rising by 1mm every year. While corals coped with the last 125,000mm of sea level rise, it’s not clear they will still be around if it rises another 20mm.

Current climate change marked in

The team of 22 researchers admit “there is still a lot to understand about corals,” and “there are major knowledge gaps”.  But despite not knowing much, the experts on marine ecosystems advise that “our only real chance for their survival” is to control the [...]

Global Warming (Hallelujah) An Inconvenient Music Video

Elmer and the Bureaucrats. (M4GW)

I love these guys! h/t Lance

Climate bargain, going cheap! Pay now, save $Trillions, stop Storms, Droughts, Bad Stuff. Ends today!

Hurry Now and Save Trillions! A 500 trillion, gazillion dollar bill is coming for you unless you buy my solar-panel-techno-wind-battery gizmo NOW! Don’t miss out. You too, can be a world saving star for a bargain price. Free planet with nice weather thrown in. Offer ends at midnight.

Seriously, have you always wanted to stop storms, vermin, disease, plagues, hunger, poverty, droughts, floods, and shrinking fish and chips?

All of this and much more if you just pay up now, pay today, pay tomorrow, and hock your children’s future.

Hands up who wants to be a hero?

Who needs an economist to calculate the biggest bill you’ve ever seen? (It’s a record, the Largest Ever Bill in Four Million Years! )

World’s young face $535 trillion bill for climate

The next generation will have to pay a $535 trillion bill to tackle climate change, relying on unproven and speculative technology.

LONDON, 19 July, 2017 – One of the world’s most famous climate scientists has just calculated the financial burden that tomorrow’s young citizens will face to keep the globe at a habitable temperature and contain global warming and climate change – a $535 trillion bill.

And much of [...]

Climate change will make your plane late, imprison you at home, buckle roads, boil asphalt

It’s the end of the world, and kittens will probably die too. Here’s another round of Global Panic. Horror part I: you will get stuck at airport-world

Earlier this week, nearly 50 flights out of Phoenix were cancelled. At 120 degrees, the temperature forecast exceeded the airline’s 118 degrees maximum operating temperature.

It’s difficult not to connect the delays to climate change….

It’s difficult not to blame climate change, after a generation of brainwashing.

So Phoenix got to 48.9C which made it nearly as hot as Marble Bar, Australia, last year (when it was 49C). After 80 years of deadly global warming both towns were nearly as hot as Marble Bar was in 1922.

As the world continues to warm, such plane delays will become more common, says Camilo Mora, an associate geography professor at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. And that’s just the beginning.

And imagine what associate professors of geology might forecast on flight patterns circa 2080? You’ll never know if you read Fortune, where anyone can forecast climate bad-news, but prize-winning atmospheric scientists remain invisible if they stick to things they know, like the [...]

If only Yes Minister had done the global warming thing (oh look…!)

Excellent comedy, if you haven’t already seen this. (Adapted from the Stage Play “Yes Prime Minister”)

Yes Prime Minister Global Warming etc Part 1 from Aris Motas on Vimeo.

Part II

Yes Prime Minister Global Warming etc Part 2 from Aris Motas on Vimeo.

Written by Antony Jay and Johnathan Lynn. BBC. h/t Waxing Gibberish and Friends of Science on Facebook.

What is the sound of a dying planet?

UPDATE: It is apparently funded by the Arts Council England. Couldn’t we guess?

A new climate forcing, let’s call it Musikiness, will change the upper trough-o-sphere:

Climate change data is being transformed into beautiful symphonies

What is the sound of a dying planet? Translating hard facts into feeling is the issue of our age – and it is the task Climate Symphony have appointed themselves. A collective of artists and scientists, the London-based team are inspiring action by transforming climate change data into music.

Listen at the link. 

Wait til you see what it can do. This is a pretty powerful tool:

“Climate Symphony has developed a side-project – calling out lies in politics.”

“We want to create a formal record,” she says, “A method of fact-checking the things Trump is saying, of finding distortions. It’s revealing. You’re looking at it, and listening to it, and you find that it’s distorted. It’s all distorted.”

Musikiness could replace the US GAO. (Who needs auditors). But I worry about what happens if they use the wrong key.

Finally, twenty years late, EcoWorriers care about transparency and “hard facts”:

“…it isn’t just background noise…  music is the [...]

Climate grief group has nine step program

I nearly headlined this:  Climate grief group meets at someone’s house, Grist covers it. That’s pretty much all this program is. No one even counts to nine in this story.

Depressed about climate change? There’s a 9-step program for that.

Imagine Alcoholics Anonymous mixed with an environmental humanities course, and you’ll begin to get a sense of the “good grief” group started by Schmidt. Its goal is to help people cope with what’s been called “climate grief” — anxiety, sadness, depression, and other emotions provoked by awareness of the planet’s march toward a hotter,… future…

 What she found was that feelings of sadness and anxiety, and even literal nightmares, were common. Last year, with the help of her partner, Aimee Reau, Schmidt developed a nine-step program for building resiliency loosely modeled on AA…

But this is big:

About a dozen people attend each session and 50 subscribe to its mailings.

If I get 12 people to my house, and have 12,000 subscribers, do you think Grist will write it up?

Perhaps they have some good results?

Perhaps not:

Schmidt, who now works as an outreach coordinator at the environmental group HEAL Utah, hopes to soon [...]

Climate caused Brexit sayth the Gore

Righto. It’s time to blame climate change for causing British voters to vote against German rule of Britain. Back when the climate was ideal, the Brits would’ve been fine with that.

Instead, even though the world has not warmed for 80% of the history of the EU, the EU is breaking up because of climate change.

It’s not like Al Gore to draw conclusions from a long nebulous chain of dubious reasoning, but here’s how it goes: Coal gives off CO2, which causes droughts according to models that don’t work, and that made Syrians migrate. Everyone got unhappy and voted for Brexit.

Climate change helped cause Brexit, says Al Gore

Brexit was caused in part by climate change, former US Vice-President Al Gore has said, warning that extreme weather is creating political instability “the world will find extremely difficult to deal with”.

Really, it’s all about coal, cars and plastic bags.  If the EU had only put in more wind farms, the UK would have voted to stay in.

If it weren’t for a lack of rain in the middle east, the British Isles would want to leave decisions about immigration, fishing and light bulbs to their friends in [...]

Ray Stevens has some Arctic land to sell for people worried about Global Warming

We need more of this sort of thing. :- )

by Ray Stevens – The Global Warming Song. A song about a “Gullible Venture”.

Top Job!

h/t  Ian. Thanks! And RedPower

Global warming may cause moose to freeze

Tragic news about moose today — the climate used to be the same for 65 million years, so moose are unprepared to deal with the sudden extra degree on the modern Earth-Perfect-Thermostat.

JACKSON, Wyo. – Global warming might cause moose to freeze to death in Yellowstone National Park.

Don’t cry. Moose are declining:

The reason for the decline is complicated. Wolves have taken moose, and grizzly bears have been expanding their presence.

But climate could be the biggest challenge. Part of the problem is ticks. A moose with too many of the parasites during the winter can lose its hair and freeze to death.

We all know, before Columbus there was one perfect quota of moose, bear, wolf. The numbers didn’t vary from the sacred Gaia Triangle Ratio (whatever it was). There were no cycles. Moose never declined. Then man came, used air conditioners in Florida, caused tick outbreaks in Saskatoon, and da fur fell off doz’ mooses. Cold moose!

In general, moose are simply better adapted to colder temperatures. When it’s too warm, they spend more time in the shade trying to cool down and less time feeding, Courtemanch said.

You might have thought [...]

Coldest Perth September recorded in 120 years of records (must be climate change)

In the last 120 years in Perth there has never been a September as cold as this one. We know that thanks to Chris Gillham, who has been tracking Western Australian weather in detail for years at WAClimate.net.

The headline in The West Australian today was Perth shivers through it’s coldest ever September. For some reason (I can’t think why) the extreme weather journalists did not mention climate change (has that ever happened on a hottest ever record story?). It’s so unusually cold here that wheat farmers, only weeks away from harvest*, are struggling with frost damage on crops. They are making snowmen from the frosts. It is supposed to be rapidly heating up but it is three degrees below normal.

Given the freak weather, Will Steffen immediately announced that “This is a prelude to a disturbing future. And it’s only going to get worse if we don’t address climate change.”  No. Wait. Scratch that. That was South Australia, where one bad storm was caused by coal fired electrons. A record cold month is just weather.

Curiously, The Bureau of Meteorology(BOM) announced it was the coldest ever September for Perth since 1994 when records started at Mt Lawley, and [...]