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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Class action win: 2011 floods were man-made — seemingly managed as if “the dams would never fill”?

Wivenhoe Dam. Photo Geoff Mackley on youtube.

ABC News: Queensland flood victims win class action against state, Seqwater and Sunwater over dam negligence

In January 2011, a record La Nina was in play known to cause higher rainfall in Australia, then flooding rains were forecast, yet the main dam holding water above Brisbane wasn’t releasing water and getting ready to be the flood buffer it was supposed to be. (It was almost as if climate scientists had advised them that the droughts would never end?). When the emergency releases came, it was too much, too late, and a bad flood became a devastating one. How much did the politically correct culture of the day cloud minds and lay the groundwork for a crisis, and how much was just mismanagement?

Skeptics saw this Class Action result coming in January 2011 (particularly Ian Mott, and Treeman writing here). Finally, nine years later, some victims will get compensation.

Blogs got the gist right in a week, the experts, government and legal machine took nine years.

A victory for the usually voiceless who stuck to the facts and prevailed

Hedley Thomas at The Australian was instrumental in drawing attention to the disastrous dam [...]

Tipping point in civilization: Experts say “listen to children” (sure, the adults are wrong)

Every day, grownups pay the bills, feed the world, and operate millions of heavy machines that move at deadly speeds. These same adults mostly don’t buy carbon credits, don’t vote Green, and don’t march in XR protests.

But evidently all those engineer-doctor-dentist-farmer humans are wrong:

It’s time to listen to the kids, Professor Steffen said.

“The bottom line is, we’re saying the schoolchildren have got it right — this is a climate emergency.”

The public broadcasting geniuses tell us we must listen to the experts, but the experts say we must listen to the kids.

Apparently the kids are invoking the unprovable endless tipping point. Anytime, anywhere, sorcerers can claim an event is just around the corner.

But the kids are right. The world is now dangerously close to tipping points that will set in motion unstoppable ecosystem collapses. This is a climate emergency.

That’s the message from scientists writing in Nature on Thursday, who say that for some systems, the window to act may have already closed.

As usual, Nick Kilvert writes good advertisements, but doesn’t ask a single semi-soft decent question like: “So Prof Steffen, do you have any empirical [...]

ABC tells us Clive James was brilliant, but not that he was a climate skeptic

Clive James was all these things,

Incredibly funny

hysterically funny

Brilliant, we all know

So skilled, and like a juggler with words


Incredibly hard working

and really loyal.

–quote, Jennifer Byrne, ABC, 7:30 Report 22:10

But he was also very much, unmistakably, an outspoken skeptic. Something the ABC couldn’t bring itself to say. What was Clive James’s position on the most expensive national policy gambit in a hundred years?

The ABC lies by omission. If he wrote a glowing Chapter about Greta in his final years we know the ABC would have told the world.

Bless you Clive: Brilliant, funny, disciplined and a climate skeptic.


Dumb poll, fake headline: Not climate change, 70% of Australians want cheap reliable electricity, 61% biggest worry is “cost of living”.

One survey — so much spin

The Fin Review headline is entirely misleading. “Climate rises as the No. 1 voter concern“. In fact, the same survey shows that two thirds of Australians didn’t even mention “climate change” as one of their top three concerns. The exact same survey shows that when prompted with different topics (rather than just asked what was on the top of their mind) the main concern of a whopping 61% was “cost of living”. Only 34% had said “climate change” in the unprompted question, and that was probably only because climate change is all over the media with bushfires, droughts and duststorms this month. It was the first issue that came into their heads, but not the issue they cared about when asked to choose among the major issues.

The exact same survey also showed that when it comes to Energy Policy fully 70% of Australians wanted cheap reliable energy more than they want “lower emissions”.

Australians prioritise energy affordability (38%), ahead of security and reliability (32%) and reducing emissions (30%).

So the message is unmistakable, yet JWS and all the media missed it. The JWS media release appears to have an agenda. How [...]

Anyone for Christmas Drinks? Perth, Melbourne, Rocky, Friday 6th December — plus Adelaide, sunshine coast… others

UPDATE #2: There are Christmas drinks events in Perth, Rockhampton and Melbourne on this Friday. Adelaide on Saturday. Sydney Dec 12th. Plus Buddina (Sunshine coast) Dec 13. Sydney Dec 12th. There may be others too, apologies if I’m not keeping up with comments below. EMAIL: joanne AT and I’ll forward on your email to the key people.

UPDATE: Other events being discussed in many locations. Do a “find” search in comments….

Australia: Melbourne, Adelaide, Sunshine Coast, Hunter Valley NSW, Rockhampton Qld, and Marysville, Geelong, Ballarat, Glenrowan, Vic. Gold Coast. There is already a fabulous group in Sydney running that started ten years ago on this blog by the great Jim Simpson. Ask and ye shall be connected. New Zealand: Nelson and Wellington. USA: How about central Washington State USA, and CT USA?

Perth, Australia: Party time, Christmas drinks and dinner is on from 6pm Friday 6th December.

We are lucky enough to have spectacular views, a central location, free parking, and just $20/head for steak and salad. Beer and wine for sale. Families welcome. No speeches. If you’d like to come, I’d love to see you there Friday week from 6pm — email me [...]

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