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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Nature – finally “finds” cause of Antarctic pause, will last centuries, tosses “global warming” out

Nature ties itself in knots here, and reveals a lot more than they probably meant too, but mostly about themselves rather than about Antarctica. If it’s correct, the implications from this study are pretty big, not that the study will tell you that. The term “Global warming” is tossed under a bus, along with almost all the Antarctic man-made scares of the last two decades. The political nature of Nature is on full display.

This time Nature claims it has found the cause of the Antarctic pause. Apparently this now finally resolves yet another conundrum (fantastic, what!) that was, as usual, not called a conundrum until it was solved. Another secret problem fixed. Where was the press release telling us there was a problem?

Those who said there was a conundrum were just deniers. It’s right there in the press release, paragraph two:

The study resolves a scientific conundrum, and an inconsistent pattern of warming often seized on by climate deniers.

Which rather begs the question: If there was a conundrum then the skeptics who pointed it out were not deniers, but correct. And if there was no conundrum, and deniers were denying something, then this is not [...]

That’s a 97% consensus at Shell that renewables are not profitable

The Top Ten solar companies don’t pay any dividends

Shell Chief Executive Ben van Beurden says he is wary of switching completely to renewables as it may threaten the very survival of the company.

Amazing that the oil and gas giant Shell got its shareholders to vote on whether they should put their profits towards becoming a 100% renewables corporation.

Major investors have been applying pressure on Shell to increase focus on renewables in order to mitigate climate change risks.

97 percent of Shell shareholders at its annual meeting on Tuesday rejected a resolution to invest profits from fossil fuels to become a renewable energy company. The Anglo-Dutch firm had previously said it was against the proposal.

So despite twenty years of relentless spin that “Clean Green Energy” is the future, 97% of investors know it isn’t.

Once again, the green sector have overplayed their hand. Shell‘s been good to them, pandering to the fear campaign for years, donating to their causes, and lobbying for carbon credits (because even and oil and gas company can get extra profits from big-government gravy into “sequestration” and biofuels.) But the green activists were not content. Too [...]

Trump: Cancel Paris, Cut Funds for UN Climate, Save the coal industry

Trump vows to cancel the Paris climate deal, stop funding UN global warming programs and save the coal industry.

Gotta love these plans. No wonder the big-government fans are apoplectic over Donald Trump as he paints targets on their most sacred cows.

In Australia Bill Shorten, potential Prime Minister, called Trump: “Barking Mad.” Shorten, showing his diplomatic talent, was burning goodwill with a potential US president and 45% of voters in the largest economy in the world and our most important strategic ally.

Below, the Trump plans this week: to use cheap energy; to stop trying to change the weather, and finish feeding faceless foreign bureaucracies.


Trump: “We’re going to cancel the Paris climate agreement,” he said.

Trump slammed both rivals in his speech, saying their policies would kill jobs and force the United States “to be begging for oil again” from Middle East producers.

Trump said slashing regulation would help the United States achieve energy independence and reduce America’s reliance on Middle Eastern producers. “Imagine a world in which oil cartels will no longer use energy as a weapon,” he said.

Donald Trump Vows to Cut US Funding for UN Climate Change [...]

Another climate model paper in Nature misses a whole class of feedbacks

It’s always the same. A new paper adds one more magical fine-tuning-cog to the models and promises “more accurate predictions”. There are a million small cogs we can add and it takes years to show they don’t deliver. These wheels can spin forever. The real climate machine has a whole extra exhaust pipe to which the models are blind.

Why some climate processes are more effective at warming Earth

Conventional models assume increasing atmospheric CO2 warms the surface, then apply the feedbacks to the surface warming. But if feedbacks start up in the atmosphere instead, everything changes.

The assumption (bolded below) is the problem –

There are many processes which affect the surface climate: changes to the sun’s activity, to the cloud cover, precipitation patterns, or soil water content to name just a few. Currently climate scientists relate these processes by looking at how much they change the energy budget, described by perturbations in the radiative forcing. The existing assumption is that if a given process introduces a certain radiative forcing, then there will always be the same response in the surface air temperature. However, this assumption doesn’t hold for the temperature response [...]

Australia’s ETS scheme: Hunt’s denial of the obvious

* UPDATE: The draft “SafeGuard” legislation in early September, before Abbott was outed, shows that the scheme was due to start on July 1, 2016, as it is now. Was Abbott aware? h/t MV

The SafeGuard legislation appears to be a shapeshiftin tool — it can be a minor fine to hit a few companies ($1.8 million) that have increased their output, or it’s a trading scheme that covers half the Australian economy. It all depends on the “cap” that’s set.

Greg Hunt, in his own words, in 2014:

Mr Hunt declared …emissions trading “is never coming back in any form“, potentially for the next two decades if the Coalition has its say.

No wonder Greg Hunt in 2016 denies that his ETS is an ETS:

Mr Hunt yesterday rejected claims a “secret” emissions trading scheme had been buried in the ­Coalition’s policies, which have been roundly criticised by environment groups as too little, too late. Mr Hunt said there were clear reasons why the Coalition “safeguards mechanisms” could not be considered a carbon trading scheme.

The clear reason it’s not an ETS?

“Our policy is not budgeted to raise [...]

Lookout — The USA is the new oil and gas superpower

“We are living in the midst of a veritable energy boom”

Since 2012, the largest producer of oil and gas in the world has been the United States, and its lead is growing.

The balance has shifted in the last ten years. US production now easily outstrips Russia and Saudi Arabia where the output has not increased much for the last decade.

The American Interest: Don’t Doubt the Strength of U.S. Shale. h/t GWPF

What an innovation nation looks like:

The primary reason for the shift from net importer to net exporter “is we know how to produce natural gas in a very inexpensive way,” [said University of Houston energy economist Ed Hirs]. “And we’re going to be exporting the natural gas out of the U.S. and potentially, we’ll be exporting electricity.”

There’s a little shift in geopolitical freedom — “thanks to shale”.