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Monday, February 24, 2014

10 Global Warming Doomsday Predictions

Have you ever seen one of those wild-eyed people with a sandwich board around his neck standing on the corner, screeching incoherently about how the end of the world is coming? Now, what if those people were insisting that you were really the crazy one? What if the newspapers agreed with them and the politicians wanted to pass taxes and spend hundreds of billions to implement their ideas? Sound too unbelievable to be true? Well, guess what? It's happening.

Global warming alarmists are regularly prophesying about doomsday scenarios -- except they're doing it in newspapers and from the stages of swanky resorts where they've flown in their private jets. Unlike the old school soothsayers, the Al Gore's of the world have figured out how to turn doom-mongering into a multi-billion dollar industry.
As you read these global warming predictions, visions, prophecies, fantasies, whatever you want to call them, ask yourself a question: if this is based on science, why do we have these huge differences in scenarios and dates? It's almost as if these people are all just pulling numbers out of their hats and putting them out there instead of basing their projections on any sort of real scientific evidence.
1) At the first Earth Day celebration, in 1969, environmentalist Nigel Calder warned, “The threat of a new ice age must now stand alongside nuclear war as a likely source of wholesale death and misery for mankind.”
2) The world has been chilling sharply for about twenty years. If present trends continue, the world will be about four degrees colder for the global mean temperature in 1990, but eleven degrees colder in the year 2000. This is about twice what it would take to put us into an ice age. --Kenneth Watt, Ecologist
3) A high-priority government report warns of climate change that will lead to floods and starvation. ‘Leading climatologists’ speak of a ‘detrimental global climatic change,’ threatening ‘the stability of most nations.’ The scenario is eerily familiar although the document — never made public before — dates from 1974. But here’s the difference: it was written to respond to the threat of global cooling, not warming. And yes, it even mentions a ‘consensus’ among scientists. -- Maurizio Morabito
Whoops! Those were all about global cooling, not global warming. My mistake. You see, that was the fashionable doomsday story for alarmists to go on about back in the early seventies and it essentially worked the same way. Mankind is causing the earth to cool and scientists agree we're all going to die! Now, it's mankind is causing earth to warm and scientists agree we're all going to die! See? It's very easy to get those two confused. Now, back to your regularly scheduled doomsday prophecies:
4) According to His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales, we only have 96 months left to save the planet.
I'm impressed. 96 months. Not 95. Not 97. July 2017. Put it in your diary. Usually the warm-mongers stick to the same old drone that we only have 10 years left to save the planet. Nice round number. Former Vice President Al Gore said we only have 10 years left 3 1/2 years ago, which makes him technically more of a pessimist than the Prince of Wales. Al's betting Armageddon kicks in January 2016 -- unless he's just peddling glib generalities. -- Mark Steyn
5) ABC Science Show presenter Robyn Williams panics about global warming:
Andrew Bolt: I ask you, Robyn, 100 metres [of sea level rises] in the next you really think that?
Robyn Williams: It is possible, yes.
It is possible, no, actually.
Now Glaciologist Nikolai Osokin of the Russian Academy of Science reassures Williams about global warming:
If all ice on the earth melted, the level of the oceans would rise by 64 meters. Many coastal cities would be under water, and so would the Netherlands, a significant part of which lies below sea level. However, the Dutch and the rest of the planet may rest assured: this hypothetical catastrophe could not take place anytime within the next thousand years
6) The UK faces a "catastrophe" of floods, droughts and killer heatwaves if world leaders fail to agree to a deal on climate change, the prime minister has warned.
Gordon Brown said negotiators had 50 days to save the world from global warming and break the "impasse."
He told the Major Economies Forum in London, which brings together 17 of the world's biggest greenhouse gas-emitting countries, there was "no plan B". -- October 19, 2009
7) Meanwhile, the Director of the Goddard Institute, James Hansen, recently sent a letter to President Obama saying that Obama has “only four years left to save the earth” from “runaway warming.” He told the London Observer in February that “The trains carrying coal to power plants are death trains. Coal-fired power plants are factories of death.” Hansen maintains that recent warming has pushed the planet close to a “tipping point” for runaway warming. What recent warming? Three hundredths of a degree C over 30 years, with temperatures still declining, doesn’t seem worth ruining the world’s economies. -- April 20, 2009
8) While doing research 12 or 13 years ago, I met (James) Hansen, the scientist who in 1988 predicted the greenhouse effect before Congress. I went over to the window with him and looked out on Broadway in New York City and said, “If what you’re saying about the greenhouse effect is true, is anything going to look different down there in 20 years?” He looked for a while and was quiet and didn’t say anything for a couple seconds. Then he said, “Well, there will be more traffic.” I, of course, didn’t think he heard the question right. Then he explained, “The West Side Highway [which runs along the Hudson River] will be under water. And there will be tape across the windows across the street because of high winds. And the same birds won’t be there. The trees in the median strip will change.” Then he said, “There will be more police cars.” Why? “Well, you know what happens to crime when the heat goes up.”
And so far, over the last 10 years, we’ve had 10 of the hottest years on record.
Didn’t he also say that restaurants would have signs in their windows that read, “Water by request only.”
Under the greenhouse effect, extreme weather increases. Depending on where you are in terms of the hydrological cycle, you get more of whatever you’re prone to get. New York can get droughts, the droughts can get more severe and you’ll have signs in restaurants saying “Water by request only.”
When did he say this will happen?
Within 20 or 30 years. And remember we had this conversation in 1988 or 1989. -- Author Rob Reiss talks with Salon's Suzy Hansen
9) A record loss of sea ice in the Arctic this summer has convinced scientists that the northern hemisphere may have crossed a critical threshold beyond which the climate may never recover. Scientists fear that the Arctic has now entered an irreversible phase of warming which will accelerate the loss of the polar sea ice that has helped to keep the climate stable for thousands of years.
They believe global warming is melting Arctic ice so rapidly that the region is beginning to absorb more heat from the sun, causing the ice to melt still further and so reinforcing a vicious cycle of melting and heating.
The greatest fear is that the Arctic has reached a "tipping point" beyond which nothing can reverse the continual loss of sea ice and with it the massive land glaciers of Greenland, which will raise sea levels dramatically. -- Friday, 16 September 2005
10) According to July 5, 1989, article in the Miami Herald, the then-director of the New York office of the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), Noel Brown, warned of a “10-year window of opportunity to solve” global warming. According to the 1989 article, “A senior U.N. environmental official says entire nations could be wiped off the face of the Earth by rising sea levels if the global warming trend is not reversed by the year 2000. Coastal flooding and crop failures would create an exodus of ‘eco-refugees,’ threatening political chaos.”
So, wait a second: are we in the middle of an ice age or is the globe afire? Are we passing the point of no return now, is it happening in 2017, did it happen in 2005, or was the UN right that it happened in 1999? Why is there a difference? How did they come up with these numbers in the first place? Do the global warming alarmists, some of whom used to be global cooling alarmists, understand why they were wrong before? Maybe a little less uncritical acceptance of what these people are saying and a lot more skepticism might be in order at this point.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Where are the Global Warmists for Freedom?

Global warming "admitters" -- to distinguish you from those of us you call "deniers" -- I have a question for you: Do any of you have an answer to the cataclysm your settled science has proven beyond any possible doubt is coming which does not require totalitarian measures?
Let me rephrase that, in case the connotations of the phrase "totalitarian measures" have not yet passed peer review, in which case their meaning may not be able to reach minds occupying the rarefied atmosphere of pure science.  My question, then, is: Do you, or any of your gods of peer review, propose solutions to anthropogenic global climate change which do not involve the violation of property rights, the restraint of individual liberty regarding matters of self-preservation (i.e., jobs and wealth-creation), the weakening of every nation's sovereignty in favor of increased "global governance," and the expanded empowerment of thousands of bureaucrats, think-tankers, and advisors accountable to no one?
I ask this only because it has become apparent that you admitters, who are undoubtedly on the right side of history -- at least compared with the anti-science Neanderthals over on this side of the fence -- are absolutely at wit's end (or even a little beyond that) in seeking to understand how anyone could possibly continue in ignorance, when both Leonardo DiCaprio and Scarlett Johansson are on the side of Truth.  Concerned about your shattered (but scientifically settled!) nerves, I propose to help you out with a little inside baseball concerning the intellectual (yeah, I know, silly word choice) reticence of the unbelievers to join in your celebration of the revealed religion.

Having lived for some time as a kind of fellow-traveler in the ranks of the denier class -- I know how your leaders on the political side of things like the word "class" -- I believe I have divined one of the major causes of their decision to remain steeped in blindness.  To wit, one of the deniers' real bugaboos about accepting the world's first ever settled science -- and if we can't accept science that certain, then what must we think of the heliocentric universe? -- is that the pure science of global warming seems to have allowed itself to be absorbed completely into a political movement bent on circumventing the rule of law and individual rights in the name of unlimited power.  Yes, I know it seems crazy, but some us still imagine we are individual living entities, with a natural urge to preserve ourselves and determine our own paths in life with a view to -- I'll wait for you to catch your breath and stop laughing - the pursuit of happiness, through virtuous action freely chosen and intellectual interests freely pursued. 
In light of this archaism of individualism that we choose to cling to -- rather bitterly I'm afraid -- we tend to be somewhat touchy about authoritarianism, regardless of the auspices under which it is pursued.  Hence, although we like a bit of national security from our national governments, we tend not to be so keen on government agencies gaining clandestine access to our private communications, fondling our women-folk at airports -- "women-folk" was just to remind you that we're hicks -- or otherwise intruding upon our daily lives in the name of protecting us.  Similarly, although we are more than capable of feeling concern for, and sympathy with, the poor, infirm, and elderly, we see no justification in this for the state to confiscate our income -- which is to say our time and labor, i.e., our lives -- in order to do generically and coercively what we could more easily (and in all likelihood more effectively) do through voluntary action, i.e., as free, moral citizens.  To put this another way, I do not see how my desire to help someone in need affords me the privilege of forcing my neighbor at gunpoint to do the same.
And this last observation brings us back to the matter at hand.  Listen carefully now -- painful as it may be to decipher my non-peer-reviewed accent, I really am trying to do you a favor.  After all, we all believe plenty of dumb things in our lives, and get suckered by dozens of false prophets of one kind or another.  I see no reason why you climate change admitters should be forcibly divested of your faith.  Perhaps, in the long run, it will advance the cause of happiness for you in some unforeseen way, as our most regrettable follies often seem to be able to do.  Who knows what benefit might accrue to a true believer of your sort, assuming he does not find himself on the business end of a glass of progressive Kool-Aid before he finds his way back to non-settled reality?
Here, then, is my point.  Is it conceivable -- just conceivable -- to you that, having achieved the Nirvana of settled science regarding man-made climate change, you might seek to persuade your unfortunate brothers on the outside to see the light, and to join you in voluntarily altering your collective behavior in the direction of a less carbonated world?  And that you might just accept the unfortunate possibility that, should you be unable to persuade us, the imaginary effect you suppose us to be having on the climate may have to continue through to its ultimate imaginary apocalypse, given that the alternative solution -- brute force aimed at curtailing human life -- would be draconian, tyrannical, and inhuman?
The fear we deniers have, and one reason we are unable to submit to all your peer-reviewed scholarship, is that your bottom-line answer to these questions is, has been, and apparently always will be "No."  Here's the little secret you seem to have overlooked: As long as your AGW advocacy -- has there ever been a more "advocated" scientific hypothesis? -- remains consubstantially linked to progressive collectivist political advocacy, no one out here in the non-settled world is ever going to take you seriously.
Oh, I know -- this is not about totalitarianism; it's just that the severity of the impending cataclysm should we "do nothing" makes strong, coordinated, immediate government action necessary in this case.  That "this case is different" mantra has been essential to the cause from day one.  And that is exactly what bothers some of us.  Where are the global warmists for freedom?  Where is just one such person?  Instead you have Michael Mann, who has officially parlayed his peer-reviewed status into a Nobel Prize he never actually received, a refusal to release the data he used to settle the science, and a season as the poster boy for the left's new strategy of silencing "deniers" through legal intimidation, via his lawsuit against Mark Steyn and the National Review. 
Why is every "concerned" response to the settled science some variation on tyranny, Goebbels-style propaganda ("97 percent of scientists agree"), or violent accusations of "idiocy" (polite version) against everyone who does not swallow the propaganda whole, and follow you into your tyranny?  This is your problem: credibility.  This may seem strange, given that you have all the peer-reviewed settled science on your side.  Unfortunately, you also have Al Gore, Barack Obama, Herman van Rompuy, the United Nations, Prince Charles, and sundry other progressive elite men and organizations on your side.  And they are using your settled science as an excuse to impose tyranny.  And you are saying nothing against this -- quite the contrary, in fact. 
In brief, "I need to take over your life, but it's for your own good," is not a line of argument men who still imagine themselves to be human are likely to accept, regardless of how many computer models you can provide to show them why you are demanding it.  You see?  It's a credibility issue after all.  For, in our (admittedly unsettled) minds, you are not enlightening us with science; you are enslaving us with lawless government.
In case you still cannot understand what I am talking about, allow me to conclude by seeing your settled cataclysm, and raising you a moral calamity.
I believe our society has become morally unhinged.  Our popular entertainment is rife with sounds, words, and images that would have been considered hardcore pornography in the not too distant past, but that are now available to -- indeed, aimed at -- every twelve year old, everywhere, all the time.  The effect of this degradation of the sentiments on education, the development of moral character, marriage and family, and adult socio-political life, is as settled, in the sense of unmistakably obvious, as any of your computer climate models -- and even has the added significance of being observable in the real world, rather than merely in the computer model. 
I sincerely believe that if this trend continues, there will be no saving civilization and rational thought on this planet, barring a complete breakdown and renewal which could take centuries before anything resembling a decent social order was regained.  It is possible -- and I do not exaggerate -- that the only way to turn this around before it is too late would involve, at a minimum, eliminating all modern popular music, and its accompanying imagery, from public availability immediately. 
Furthermore, I believe it might be necessary to institute a program of forced "access" to corrective musical forms for every human being -- let's say two hours per day consisting exclusively of Mozart, Bach, Vivaldi and Telemann, with one hour per week allowed for free choice from among any approved selections from any historical period prior to 1820.  Anyone caught listening to music composed after that year would face fines or imprisonment, depending on the severity of the offense.  One who abstained from his weekly free choice hour for a given number of weeks might be permitted to trade those hours for an hour of some more recent compositions, though the options would of course be limited to avoid overtly negative influences, e.g. Wagner.
Crazy, right?  And yet I am one hundred percent sure that if everyone followed a music-listening program similar to the one I have just advised, rather than the one most people have reduced themselves and their children to today, the world would be a better place on all levels, and just might avoid any further moral collapse of the sort that allows people to run submissively into the arms of totalitarian government just because Al Gore or Michael Mann told them to.
I have described, somewhat fancifully, what might save us.  And yet I would never actually propose it in practice, or advocate for it during political campaigns, or call people who disagree with me about the effects of Miley Cyrus and Lady Gaga "morons."  (Okay, I might do that last one.) 
Why not?  Because, through it all, and in spite of my belief that all my arguments are likely to be in vain, I cannot accept the proposition that my diagnosis of the ills of modern life, or my prognosis for the future if the current trajectory continues, give me -- or anyone else, elected or otherwise -- the moral authority to impose a new way of life on other human beings against their will.  So I am forced by the moral self-restraint of a rational individualist to try to persuade people, to show them what I mean, and to convince them to pursue a better life according to my best lights.  I cannot force them at gunpoint, just as they cannot force me.
So why, then, do you climate change admitters unanimously reject this option, and head straight for the Obamas, Kerrys, and Clintons of the world as your saviors?  Go ahead, try to persuade me.  Bury me in peer-reviewed articles, arguments from authority, decline-hiding fudgable facts and figures, anything you like.  I will listen, if your case is at least entertaining.  But I will shut you out the moment you begin telling me what I must do, or what governments are going to impose upon me in violation of my natural rights, "for my own good."
As soon as you go that way, we deniers start to suspect that tyranny, not science, was your real motive all along.  Get it?  Then try to prove us wrong.

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Environmenal groups starting to directly sue industry

Starting Monday, a federal judge in Waco will hear arguments from the Sierra Club that Luminant Generation Company, the state’s largest electric generator, has been spewing far more pollution into the air from an East Texas coal plant than is allowed by federal and state law.
The case is one of at least three high-profile lawsuits that are being heard in federal court this year in which environmental groups in Texas have taken matters into their own hands. They are suing industries for excess pollution directly, rather than relying on the government to take action. And although such “citizen suits” have been permitted since the beginning of environmental regulation in the United States decades ago, they could become more common as agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency are increasingly scrutinized by politicians and the industry, and they continue to suffer from budget cuts.
“Historically, there has been an uptick in citizen suit filings when there is something of a slowdown in enforcement,” said Matthew Morrison, an environmental lawyer based in Washington, and a former counsel for the EPA. If the agency is not aggressive enough on its own, Morrison said, “citizen suits may happen more often.”
In Texas, frustration from environmental groups stems from what they say is inaction on the federal and state level. Luke Metzger, director of Environment Texas, said the group decided to sue ExxonMobil after “years and years” of asking the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality to take action. “Going through the courts is our best option. It’s kind of our last option,” Metzger said. The trial for that case began in Houston this month and is continuing.
In court filings, defendants in each case say they are allowed to emit excess pollution during exceptional events. ExxonMobil also said it has been fined about $100,000 for violations in recent years by the Texas commission. Environment Texas and the Sierra Club, which is also a plaintiff in the suit, are demanding that ExxonMobil pay far more — as much as $37,500 for each day that excess emissions occurred. The Sierra Club has made the same demand in another lawsuit against Luminant for its operation of a second coal plant. That trial will begin in Texarkana later this year. 
More transparency from the state has also made a difference. While Metzger’s group says that ExxonMobil’s Baytown complex has over-polluted for decades, a lawsuit against the company became more feasible after the Texas agency began posting emissions reports on its website a few years ago, he said.
Luminant declined to comment for this article, and an ExxonMobil spokesman said the company has invested more than $1.3 billion  in environmental upgrades at its Baytown facilities since 2000. According to court filings, neither company disputed the data on emissions that was presented in the lawsuits — after all, it comes from their own reports to the state — but the companies vehemently denied that they were violating the law.
Both argued that such emissions breaches were allowed during what are called maintenance, start-up and shutdown events. The companies said they had done everything necessary under federal and state law to minimize breaches, which they said were unavoidable.
Such an argument, which is known as affirmative defense, is commonly used to avoid penalties for excessive emissions. But after decades of broadly allowing the use of such an argument, the EPA has proposed eliminating the opportunity for industries to use it during “planned” start-up and shutdown operations. They would only be able to use that argument for “unplanned” periods of malfunction.
“It’s now become kind of an enforcement priority for the agency to look at cases where there is noncompliance and there may not be an exception that protects them,” said Morrison, the former EPA lawyer. “At some point, the agency will say, ‘You know what, buddy? That’s not a malfunction. If you’re having them that frequently, it’s probably unfair for you to keep calling them that, and we’re going to come after you.’”
The idea has prompted outrage from companies like Luminant, which say they would be forced to spend tens of millions of dollars on pollution control equipment, which is notoriously difficult to keep operating while also starting up or shutting down a facility. Environmentalists are not happy either, in part because states can get around the change by imposing higher emissions thresholds for such events.
The EPA has postponed making a final decision on the proposal until June, and is almost sure to be challenged in court, no matter what it decides. Both Luminant and environmental groups have already sued the EPA for imposing similar changes just to Texas law. While a federal judge rejected both plaintiffs’ arguments last year, and the Supreme Court declined to hear an appeal, the agency is now considering making sweeping changes in dozens of other states. The heads of Texas’ utility regulatory and environmental agencies have said in public comments that the proposal does not take into account its possible effect on the reliability of the state’s electric grid.
In the meantime, citizen suits challenging exceptions to pollution limitations are likely to continue — and both plaintiffs and defendants may be more aggressive. While the vast majority of citizen groups reach a settlement before reaching the bench, that is not the case with any of the three lawsuits that federal judges are to hear in Texas in the coming months. All are going to trial.
“I’m really surprised to hear that,” said Thomas McGarity, a professor of environmental law at the University of Texas at Austin. Defendants usually settle because “it’s usually so obvious that they’ve been violating the law, and they don’t want to take the hit.”
In recent years, Chevron Phillips and Shell have agreed to settle, rather than go to trial, after environmental groups in Texas filed citizen suits against them for pollution violations. Al Armendariz, a former EPA official who resigned after a two-year-old video surfaced of him telling a group of Texans that the EPA should “crucify” polluters as a deterrent, said he hopes ExxonMobil and Luminant decide to do the same.
“These facilities are all enjoying the Texas economic boom,” said Armendariz, who now works for the Sierra Club. “You can make the investments, clean up the environment, comply with the law and still make lots of money for your shareholders.”

Thursday, February 20, 2014

A must read: Why Secretary of State John Kerry Is Flat Wrong on Climate Change

By Dr. Richard McNider and Dr. John Christy
In a Feb. 16 speech in Indonesia, Secretary of State John Kerry assailed climate-change skeptics as members of the “Flat Earth Society” for doubting the reality of catastrophic climate change. He said,
“We should not allow a tiny minority of shoddy scientists” and “extreme ideologues to compete with scientific facts.”
But who are the Flat Earthers, and who is ignoring the scientific facts?
In ancient times, the notion of a flat Earth was the scientific consensus, and it was only a minority who dared question this belief. We are among today’s scientists who are skeptical about the so-called consensus on climate change. Does that make us modern-day Flat Earthers, as Mr. Kerry suggests, or are we among those who defy the prevailing wisdom to declare that the world is round?
Most of us who are skeptical about the dangers of climate change actually embrace many of the facts that people like Bill Nye, the ubiquitous TV “science guy,” say we ignore. The two fundamental facts are that carbon-dioxide levels in the atmosphere have increased due to the burning of fossil fuels, and carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is a greenhouse gas, trapping heat before it can escape into space.
What is not a known fact is by how much the Earth’s atmosphere will warm in response to this added carbon dioxide. The warming numbers most commonly advanced are created by climate computer models built almost entirely by scientists who believe in catastrophic global warming. The rate of warming forecast by these models depends on many assumptions and engineering to replicate a complex world in tractable terms, such as how water vapor and clouds will react to the direct heat added by carbon dioxide or the rate of heat uptake, or absorption, by the oceans.
We might forgive these modelers if their forecasts had not been so consistently and spectacularly wrong. From the beginning of climate modeling in the 1980s, these forecasts have, on average, always overstated the degree to which the Earth is warming compared with what we see in the real climate.
For instance, in 1994 we published an article in the journal Nature showing that the actual global temperature trend was “one-quarter of the magnitude of climate model results.” As the nearby graph shows, the disparity between the predicted temperature increases and real-world evidence has only grown in the past 20 years.
When the failure of its predictions become clear, the modeling industry always comes back with new models that soften their previous warming forecasts, claiming, for instance, that an unexpected increase in the human use of aerosols had skewed the results. After these changes, the models tended to agree better with the actual numbers that came in—but the forecasts for future temperatures have continued to be too warm.
The modelers insist that they are unlucky because natural temperature variability is masking the real warming. They might be right, but when a batter goes 0 for 10, he’s better off questioning his swing than blaming the umpire.
The models mostly miss warming in the deep atmosphere—from the Earth’s surface to 75,000 feet—which is supposed to be one of the real signals of warming caused by carbon dioxide. Here, the consensus ignores the reality of temperature observations of the deep atmosphere collected by satellites and balloons, which have continually shown less than half of the warming shown in the average model forecasts.
The climate-change-consensus community points to such indirect evidence of warming as glaciers melting, coral being bleached, more droughts and stronger storms. Yet observations show that the warming of the deep atmosphere (the fundamental sign of carbon-dioxide-caused climate change, which is supposedly behind these natural phenomena) is not occurring at an alarming rate: Instruments aboard NASA and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association satellites put the Mid-Tropospheric warming rate since late 1978 at about 0.7 degrees Celsius, or 1.3 degrees Fahrenheit, per 100 years. For the same period, the models on average give 2.1 degrees Celsius, or 3.8 degrees Fahrenheit, per 100 years (see graph).
The models also fail to get details of the past climate right. For example, most of the observed warming over land in the past century occurred at night. The same models used to predict future warming models showed day and night warming over the last century at nearly the same rates.
Past models also missed the dramatic recent warming found in observations in the Arctic. With this information as hindsight, the latest, adjusted set of climate models did manage to show more warming in the Arctic. But the tweaking resulted in too-warm predictions—disproved by real-world evidence—for the rest of the planet compared with earlier models.
Shouldn’t modelers be more humble and open to saying that perhaps the Arctic warming is due to something we don’t understand?
While none of these inconsistencies refutes the fundamental concern about greenhouse-gas-enhanced climate change, it is disturbing that “consensus science” will not acknowledge that such discrepancies are major problems. From the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s beginning, that largely self-selected panel of scientists has embraced the notion that consensus on climate change is the necessary path to taking action and reducing man-made carbon emissions around the world. The consensus community uses this to push the view that “the science is settled” and hold up skeptics to ridicule, as John Kerry did on Sunday.
We are reminded of the dangers of consensus science in the past. For example, in the 18th century, more British sailors died of scurvy than died in battle. In this disease, brought on by a lack of vitamin C, the body loses its ability to manufacture collagen, and gums and other tissues bleed and disintegrate. These deaths were especially tragic because many sea captains and some ships’ doctors knew, based on observations early in the century, that fresh vegetables and citrus cured scurvy.
Nonetheless, the British Admiralty’s onshore Sick and Health Board of scientists and physicians (somewhat akin to the current Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) dismissed this evidence for more than 50 years because it did not fit their consensus theory that putrefaction (or internal decay) caused scurvy, which they felt could be cured by fresh air, exercise and laxatives.
“Consensus” science that ignores reality can have tragic consequences if cures are ignored or promising research is abandoned. The climate-change consensus is not endangering lives, but the way it imperils economic growth and warps government policy making has made the future considerably bleaker. The recent Obama administration announcement that it would not provide aid for fossil-fuel energy in developing countries, thereby consigning millions of people to energy poverty, is all too reminiscent of the Sick and Health Board denying fresh fruit to dying British sailors.
We should not have a climate-science research program that searches only for ways to confirm prevailing theories, and we should not honor government leaders, such as Secretary Kerry, who attack others for their inconvenient, fact-based views.
Messrs. McNider and Christy are professors of atmospheric science at the University of Alabama in Huntsville and fellows of the American Meteorological Society. Mr. Christy was a member of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change that shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with former Vice President Al Gore. Mr. Christy was a member of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change that shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with Vice President Al Gore.
Kerry’s speech in Indonesia:


What exactly is the one per cent's problem with cheap energy, scientific evidence and free market capitalism?

The question is raised yet again with news that hedge fund billionaire turned environmental activist Tom Steyer wants to make "climate change" a key issue in the 2014 midterm elections by funding a $100 million ad push.
Half the money will come from his own pocket, funneled through his San-Francisco-based NextGen Climate Action group; half from fellow liberal billionaires.
As the HuffPo salivatingly reports, this is part of Steyer's ongoing masterplan to turn the US greener than a green-themed St Patrick's Day party thrown by Shrek, Kermit the Frog, and the Jolly Green Giant.
Steyer emerged on the national scene last year when he spent close to $8 million backing Democrat Terry McAuliffe's campaign for Virginia governor. He funded ads going after Republican nominee Ken Cuccinelli's environmental record, painting the then-Virginia Attorney General as an extremist.
He's also been a major advocate against construction of the Keystone XL pipeline. During President Barack Obama's State of the Union address last month, Steyer's group aired an ad describing the controversial pipeline as a "sucker punch to America's heartland." And earlier this month, he penned a letter to John Kerry urging the secretary of state to review the environmental impact statement released by the State Department last month that found the project would not impact greenhouse gas emissions.
Steyer has already eyed one potential 2014 target -- Sen. Mary Landrieu's (D-La.) reelection campaign. Last month, his group included Landrieu on a list of potential targets for his next anti-Keystone ad, calling on supporters to vote on who should be the subject of the attack. Landrieu, a supporter of the pipeline, was the only Democrat on the list.
In the comments below, a HuffPo reader named Gudele Martens enthuses: "Refreshing to see a 1%-er caring about the future."
Actually no it's not, Gudele, it is achingly, drearily, predictably, un-refreshing. With the possible exceptions of the UN, the European Union, and the US government, no one in the world gives quite so extravagantly to lunatic environmental causes as the membership of the one per cent.
Who, for example, was behind the Obama administration's master-plan to revive the US economy through the creation of "green jobs"?
Why it was none other than billionaire George Soros, via his Center For American Progress, which he funds to the tune of $27 million a year. (Along with numerous other environmentalist causes ranging from funding the hard-left Tides Foundation to his $14 billion green private equity firm Silver Lake, which he set up with Obama's former Energy Czar Cathy Zoi).
And who pays for Britain's most influential environmental propaganda outlets, the Grantham Research Institute and the Grantham Institute for Climate Change?
Why, none other than Jeremy Grantham, billionaire co-founder of Boston-based asset management firm Grantham Mayo van Otterloo (GMO).
Let us not forget, either, all the rich celebrities who fund environmental causes: Ted Turner; Robert Redford; Yoko Ono; Leo DiCaprio; Cate Blanchett; Edward Norton; Brad Pitt; Pierce Brosnan (named "Best-Dressed Environmentalist" by the Sustainable Style Foundation); Adrian Grenier from Entourage; Ed Begley Jr...
Nor yet, all those wealthy charitable foundations such as the Rockefeller Foundation, the Esme Fairbairn Foundation,  and the Pew Foundation, which may have been created by the money of arch-capitalists but which now have political affiliations in the green movement and elsewhere. They owe rather more to Occupy than to Wall Street.
I deal with this in more detail in my new book The Little Green Book Of Eco Fascism (Regnery)  which I wrote partly to expose one of the green movement's most outrageous lies: that all the money is on the capitalist side of the argument and that green campaign groups are just cute little mom and pop operations living from hand to mouth.
Yeah, right. As Australian blogger Jo Nova has demonstrated when it comes to funding climate change alarmism, spending on Warmist causes outweighs that of spending on Skeptical causes by a factor of around 3,500 to 1.
What applies to "climate change" will certainly apply at least as strongly to all those other green causes so beloved by philanthrophic rich people with nothing more sensible to do with their money, such as "biodiversity,” "sustainability,” and the rest.
Why, though, would so many Hollywood stars, hedge funders and industrialists who have gotten rich thanks to the capitalist system now rush so eagerly support the kind of people who want to regulate markets, drive up the price of energy, and deliberately limit economic growth (in order to preserve "scarce resources" for "future generations")?
 Here are my theories on this.
1. Misdirected guilt. Making big money often involves questionable behaviour. Donating all their ill-gotten gain to the cuddly polar bears and the Truffula trees is the perfect way for evil capitalists to feel all warm and gooey about themselves. Hey, what could be nobler than actually saving the whole PLANET?
 2. Pure ignorance. Being good at pretending to be someone else on a film set or shorting pork belly futures does not necessarily mean you think deeply or read widely. Shallow people are drawn to superficial belief systems, such as environmental theory which owes much more to feelings than it does to real world evidence.
 3. The Dumb Useless Heir Effect. This applies mainly to charitable foundations. Dad makes the money through raw capitalism; his sons and daughters, not needing to work for a living instead spend their time swanning around college, imbibing the very worst of liberal thinking on every pointless left-wing cause going. So Dad's money ends up being spent trying to destroy the very capitalist system from which his wealth derived.
 4. How else do you get George Clooney to come to your parties? This, so it is rumored, is what inspired Arianna Huffington's famous conversion from Conservatism to Liberalism. The same applies, no doubt, to hedge funders like our friend Tom Steyer. Donating to green causes makes you feel good about yourself AND get the approval of Hollywood A-listers.
 5. Peer group pressure. Apart, possibly from the Koch brothers, who can you name who openly donates to institutions which defend free market capitalism against environmental activism? You can't because there's no one. Environmentalism is so fashionable that no one wants to be seen publicly to be against it. (Not even those people informed enough to know that when you scratch below the surface environmentalism has less to do with saving the planet than it does with socialistic wealth redistribution, junk science, Solyndra-style corporatist cronyism)
 6. The drawbridge effect. You've made your money. Now the very last thing you want is for all those trashy middle class people below you to have a fair shot at getting as rich as you are. That's why you want to make energy more expensive by opposing Keystone XL; why you're all for environmental land sequestration (because you already own your exclusive country property); and Agenda 21 - which will make all Americans poorer, but you not so much, because you've enough cash to cushion you from the higher taxes and regulation with which the greenies want to hamstring the economy.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

A sure sign of global warming?

Great lakes are on the verge of record ice cover. Now at 87%The heat is hiding in Lake Ontario which is only at 37%.  Something about surface to volume ratio. 

The total ice cover on the Great Lakes continued to increase in the past seven days. At the rate the ice is growing, ice cover would reach record levels sometime next week.
We also had a mostly clear day Tuesday February 11, 2014. The high resolution satellite was able to generate some fascinating images.

The total ice cover on the entire Great Lakes system is reported at 87.3 percent today, according to the Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory(GLERL). The ice cover is up from 77 percent covered seven days ago.

The highest recorded total ice cover on the Great Lakes is 94.7 percent back on February 19, 1979. It should be emphasized that the most modern data set only goes back to 1973.
So the entire Great Lakes system has gone from 77 percent ice covered last week to 87 percent ice covered today. At that rate of increase, the Great Lakes would set a new modern day record for ice cover sometime next week.
Here's a rundown of all the individual lakes ice growth this week:

Lake Superior
Lake Superior is almost frozen over, but not completely as of this morning. Lake Superior is now covered 95.3 percent with ice. Last week at this time it was 92 percent covered. At this pace it could get to 100 percent ice covered before the warm-up hits Wednesday of next week. In the modern day data set, Lake Superior was 100 percent ice covered on March 3, 1996.

The high resolution satellite image is even showing a thickness to the southern edge of the ice.

Lake Michigan
The ice on Lake Michigan grew the most in the past seven days, adding an impressive 29 percent ice. Lake Michigan is now rated as 80 percent ice covered. The highest ice cover in recent times is 93.1 percent on February 9, 1977. At this rate of ice growth, Lake Michigan could set its individual lake record on ice also next week.

Lake Huron
Lake Huron is also almost entirely frozen. Lake Huron is covered 94.7 percent in ice. Last week at this time, Huron was covered 85 percent with ice. The record ice cover is 98.3 percent on February 9, 1994. Lake Huron could reach that any day now.

Lake St. Clair
Lake St. Clair is small enough that it is almost entirely ice covered, with 99 percent covered in ice as of today.

Lake Erie
Lake Erie is 95.9 percent ice covered, which is up from 93.9 percent ice covered this time last week. You can see that the last few percentage points heading toward 100 percent ice cover take the longest time. Lake Erie has been completely covered in ice three years since 1973. 1978, 1979, and 1996 were ice filled years for Lake Erie.

Lake Ontario
Lake Ontario is still only 32 percent ice covered, and has only added one-half of one percent of ice cover in the last week. This lack of ice cover in comparison to the other lakes is a mystery to some. I'll solve that mystery. According to George Leshkevich, physical scientist and Great Lakes ice expert at NOAA's GLERL, Lake Ontario has a larger amount of heat storage than it has heat loss. Lake Ontario appears as the smallest Great Lake when looked at from above. But Lake Ontario has three times the volume of water of Lake Erie. Leshkevich says the heat is lost through the surface area, which is small on Lake Ontario. Lake Superior, on the other hand, is much deeper with much more volume, but also has a large surface area for heat loss. Leshkevich also points toward the large volume of relatively warmer moving water that enters Lake Ontario through the Niagara Falls. This rapid water flow certainly keeps some ice from forming.

Will record ice be reached
The temperatures over all of the Great Lakes are going to stay below freezing until next Tuesday. So ice cover will continue to increase from now through next Tuesday. Record ice better be reached by Tuesday, or it may fall short. A several day significant warm-up will move into the Great Lakes from next Wednesday through next Friday. Some ice could even be taken away during that period. After that warm-up another round of below freezing temperatures will move in, but it won't be as cold as it has been recently. Also, we are approaching March and occasional days above freezing will be more common.
So if you are hoping to live through historic ice cover, it will probably have to happen before next Wednesday.

In my mind, if we are going to come this far, we might as well set a new record.
But then let's get on to spring.