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Sunday
Mar132011

Quote of the day

This was apparently posted to the comments on Christopher Booker's article today:
I have worked in government for 28 years as an economist, and for the last 20 years I have worked on environmental programs. In that time I have not seen a shred of evidence to justify global warming, let alone man made global warming and I have not seen a shred of evidence that there is going to be a green economic boom. The only evidence I have seen is that there is a green economic bust, that money invested in green technologies is usually wasted and simply consumes investment that could be better used elsewhere. I think that anybody in government or industry who can not understand this is either dishonest, stupid, or both. That applies to Cameron - I think he is both.
H/T Messenger
Sunday
Mar132011

Climate cuttings 50

A few interesting bits and pieces this morning, as the Climate Cuttings series reaches its half century.

Bryan Appleyard has an article in the Sunday Times on sceptics, namechecking Piers Corbyn, Lord Monckton, Graham Stringer and Fay Kelly-Tuncay (who is campaigning to repeal the Climate Change Act here in the UK). The article can be seen at Appleyard's site or here.

Neither side is winning this fight, though the greens are on the ropes. As they slug it out, the language grows ever more vicious and the claims of both sides ever more extreme. To the sceptics the greens are lying, cheating, catastrophe-crazed group thinkers; to the warmists, the sceptics are mad, bad, neo-fascist defenders of Big Oil.

At the margins it is, admittedly, all too easy to find evidence for all these charges. But in the middle, the ground occupied by the reasonable person, there is only confusion and uncertainty. Meanwhile, the planet cycles on regardless. In time, it will make its own decisions about the viability of our troublesome species.

As if to emphasise the tottering of the global warming edifice, Ford are getting out of the electric vehicle market.

We still don’t know what the winning technology is going to be…We’re continuing to invest in hydrogen, we’re continuing to invest in biofuels.”

It's not hard to see why greens are struggling when they take desperate steps like calling for action on global warming because of the tsunami in Japan.

Jonathan Adler of everybody's favourite US law blog, the Volokh Conspiracy, looks at alternatives to regulation of carbon dioxide. Judy Curry responds.

Saturday
Mar122011

Joe Bastardi's new home

Joe Bastardi has set up his new online home at www.weatherbell.com.

Welcome back Joe.

Saturday
Mar122011

Chutzpah of the day

Tamino has written an article about Josh, criticising his Paul Nurse cartoon. He fully admits that Josh is correct, but apparently he's a bad man for mentioning it. I can only describe this argument as, well, Taminoesque.

Those who deny the reality, human cause, or danger of global warming, don’t always tell outright lies. One of their common tactics is to say what’s technically true, but is also irrelevant, misleading, or more often, both.

This is a remarkable thing to say, when one remembers Tamino's outrageous quoting out of context in his RealClimate article on the Hockey Stick Illusion. I'm not sure why it was OK for the Horizon programme to say incorrect things about the relative size of human and natural CO2 emissions while correcting these errors was blameworthy in some way. If the ratio is irrelevant and misleading when Josh puts it in a cartoon, why is it not equally irrelevant when Dr Bindschadler speaks about it?

Saturday
Mar122011

New domain host

The changeover to a new domain host took place just now. Let's see if this makes any difference to the commenting problems. It may take 24 hours for the new settings to propagate around the internet though.

Friday
Mar112011

EPA stripped of power to regulate GhGs

The Energy and Commerce Subcomittee of the US House of Representatives has voted to strip the Environmental Protection Agency of the power to regulate greenhouse gases.

The sharply partisan vote was preordained by the Republican takeover of the House. Republicans and their industry allies accuse the administration of levying taxes on traditional energy sources through costly environmental regulations, threatening the economic recovery and driving jobs overseas.

 

Friday
Mar112011

Crushing of dissent

A high school student in Australia is struggling to keep quiet during climate change lessons...

For the third lesson the PowerPoint was brought out again with even more questionable statements claiming that putting more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere is causing: an increase in temperature by one degree; a rise in sea levels; more bush fires; more droughts; more animals to become extinct; malaria to become more widespread (so much so that it would spread to the Northern Territory); the Arctic Ocean to be ice-free by 2050; the extinction of the polar bear; and, my personal favourite, “China and Indonesia will be too hot to grow rice.”

H/T Deadman



Friday
Mar112011

Is CCS worth it?

This is interesting - a new paper that looks at carbon capture and wonders about the extra energy used in capturing and storing the carbon. If you use extra energy, you are releasing extra CO2, right?

Carbon Capture and Storage is being actively developed for deployment in fossil fuel power stations in an attempt to reduce future emissions of CO2 due to concerns about climate change. The deployment of this technology will cause an inevitable reduction in the overall efficiency of any electricity generation plant leading to an increase in demand for the fossil fuels used to power the generation process. This paper estimates the average reduction in generation efficiency caused by the imposition of Carbon Capture and Storage and considers its effects upon the depletion rate of global coal reserves. Future production of coal is modelled using a symmetrical production curve. The results suggest that the widespread adoption of Carbon Capture and Storage may result in the exhaustion of coal reserves several decades in advance of when this may happen if CCS is not deployed.

 

 

Thursday
Mar102011

How to publish a comment

H/T to DI for this article by Rick Trebino, a physicist from Georgia Tech.

...in this article, I’ll share with you my recent experience publishing a Comment, so you can, too. There are just a few simple steps:

1. Read a paper that has a mistake in it.
2. Write and submit a Comment, politely correcting the mistake.
3. Enjoy your Comment in print along with the authors’ equally polite Reply, basking in the joy of having participated in the glorious scientific process and of the new friends you’ve made—

the authors whose research you’ve greatly assisted.

Ha ha! You didn’t really believe that, did you?
Read the whole thing.
Thursday
Mar102011

Generators

Given that it looks like the lights will be going out soon, it may be worth taking a look at one of these - a home generator:

There is a markdown of 40% or so at Amazon at the moment. (H/T Lord Beaverbrook)

Thursday
Mar102011

Perpetual motion

A new blog on the block - Perpetual Motion is the online home of Colin McInnes, professor of engineering at Strathclyde University, and is focused on engineering, energy and the environment.

Thursday
Mar102011

Discussion page

I have now added a forum to this site as a home for off topic conversations and anything else people want to talk about.

The link is in the navigation bar.

Thursday
Mar102011

Rolls Royce minds

A must-hear interview with Jill Duggan, the bureaucrat in charge of Britain's emissions trading scheme. The Australians who are conducting the interview are worried that perhaps an ETS is not such a good idea.

Having heard the interview you will understand why they feel this way - Duggan's performance is truly catastrophic, with our the woman from Whitehall apparently unable to quantify either the costs or the benefits of the scheme she runs. It's hilarious, toe-curling and utterly compelling.

These, ladies and gentlemen, are the Rolls Royce minds that run the UK these days.

Excerpt (2Mb)

Thursday
Mar102011

Perverse incentives in the ivory tower

From the comments at Judith Curry's blog, a contribution from economist, Curt Doolittle.

The degree to which the academic scientific community in the west, since the 1970s has undermined scientific credibility is not understood in the incestuous circle of academia. To counter this effect: Write books not papers. Falsify your own work. Seek to justify opposing views. Ruthlessly attack others who undermine scientific credibility in the public debate. Reduce the number of graduate students and hide their work unless it is extremely well argued (this is a contrary incentive). It’s not about writing stories. It’s about doing good science. And right now, climate science is insufficiently articulated for human beings to justify paying the huge cost associated with the apocalyptic visions. Human beings are rational. They just need a rational argument and to understand the costs and benefits in relation to all their other costs and benefits.

The whole comment is worth a read.

I wonder where Sir Paul Nurse stands on the perverse incentives of academics?

Wednesday
Mar092011

The wind from Hawaii

Science has obtained statements from Eugene Wahl and Michael Mann regarding recent reports about the "delete all emails" episode. The major point of interest is that, Mann says that, contrary to some reports, he said nothing to Wahl, merely forwarding Jones' request to the AR4 delete emails:

Mann, reached on vacation in Hawaii, said the stories yesterday were "libelous" and false. "They're spreading a lie about me," he said of the Web sites. "This has been known for a year and a half that all I did was forward Phil's e-mail to Eugene." Asked why he sent the e-mail to his colleague, Mann said, "I felt Eugene Wahl had to be aware of this e-mail … it could be used against him. I didn't delete any e-mails and nor did I tell Wahl to delete any e-mails." Why didn't Mann call Wahl to discuss the odd request? "I was so busy. It's much easier to e-mail somebody. No where did I approve of the instruction to destroy e-mails."

Wahl confirms Mann's story in a separate statement.

I must say, I wasn't aware that Mann had added nothing. Does anyone know where this was revealed?