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Tuesday
Jul282015

Quote of the day, Boyd edition

I see too many studies...assigning causation to climate change when the evidence for this is quite poor...I think this is bad for climate science in general and authors and journal editors need to try to avoid the temptation of headline-grabbing when it is not justified by the evidence.

This comes from Professor Ian Boyd, the chief scientist at Defra, whose blog can be found here. It doesn't seem to be updated often, and the quote is from an old post. But fun nevertheless.

Tuesday
Jul282015

Spanish fail to fly

Interesting news from Spain, where it has been revealed that the country has failed to install a single megawatt of wind power capacity in the last six months. This comes after managing just 27 MW in 2014.

This makes the country's plans to put a further 5000 MW in place by 2020 look just a tad optimistic.

(Link to Spanish language article)

Monday
Jul272015

Would you want to let this man near your pension?

Mark Wilson, the boss of insurance giant Aviva has been getting in on the climate alarm act, with a speech to a city audience in which he outlined his shock at the horrors ahead and explained what Aviva intends to do about it. The bare bones of the plan can be seen here, and is headed by this summary of Mr Wilson's thinking.

If we do not take urgent action to limit global temperature increases to within 2°C the impacts upon the economy, society, and our business will be nothing short of devastating.

To which the only plausible response is "drivel". I don't think there is a single reputable scientist who would support Mr Wilson's view. The IPCC doesn't think this. Richard Betts, the head of climate impacts at the Met Office doesn't either. The academic literature is clear that the target is a political convenience. Even Ottmar Edenhofer, who came up with the idea of a target has confirmed that view. "Two degrees brings chaos" is mainly the preserve of the wilder fringes of the green movement.

Click to read more ...

Monday
Jul272015

D is for diesel

In my Twitter feed yesterday came something entirely without precedent: a tweet from Lord Deben. This was something of a shock, as the noble lord has hitherto made it a matter of policy never to address me directly, leaving his followers in the slightly strange position of trying to work out who it is that he is insulting.

I assume that this was an error on his part.

He was responding to a tweet from someone who asked rather alarmingly:

Click to read more ...

Monday
Jul272015

Energy and climate priorities

The Commons Energy and Climate Change Committee has asked for suggestions of what they should do to hold the government to account in the coming session. Now shorn of any obviously sceptic members one assumes that the committee will simply be asking the government why they aren't making more futile and expensive gestures, but I don't suppose there is any harm in our putting some alternative ideas forward, if only so they can be ignored.

The obvious one to me is to look again at current energy policy in the light of the crash in oil prices, but perhaps readers would like to make some other suggestions. I'll compile the best ones into a letter to the committee.

Sunday
Jul262015

What am I bid?

Richard Black, whom you  might recall from the obscure BBC past, has recently (24.7.2015)  tweeted that Simon Sharpe, head of the FCO Climate Risk Department, has  suggested  that the risk of a seven degree warming  by 2200  is now more than 50% under "business as usual".

A conclusion made in good time for Paris, then. Any advance on seven degrees, what am I bid? 

Black  also asks the question: "Can the UK run on 100% renewables with no baseload power. Maybe it could..."

TM

Update: 8.27am corrected  figures typo.

Saturday
Jul252015

Cooked Motl - Josh 337

Apparently John Cook, of Skeptical Science blog, has been impersonating Lubos Motl, see Lubos blog here, also reported on WUWT and the Air Vent, here and here

Why John Cook thought this was a good idea remains a mystery. But then it has been a strange week with Peter Wadhams convinced there is a conspiracy against him. Are the alarmists getting alarmed?

Cartoons by Josh

Saturday
Jul252015

Hottest May evah?

Don't miss the splendid temperature anomaly map for May published by Paul Homewood.

Saturday
Jul252015

Green Deal  claptrap

Yesterday the government announced it was to scrap funding for the Green Deal, spelling the end for its flagship energy household efficiency programme. Richard Howard is head of centre-right think tank Energy and Environment, Policy Exchange. Ed Davey is former Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change.

An extraordinary interview  on energy policy took place at 7.50 am on BBC Radio 4 Today programme, with John Humphreys soliciting the opinions on the scrapping of the Green Deal from the two below.  [Funny that a spokesman on energy policy from this think tank is OK, while Lord Lawson from the GWPF (the clue is in the name) is persona non grata. ]

After the usual introduction, (there is a scientific consensus, we are all doomed by dangerous climate change unless we act)  from JH,  there followed a  barmy mixture of  a reasonable helping of financial common sense from Richard Howard, tempered by the obligatory "renewables are a jolly good thing". He did say that the Government are "looking at the removal of subsidies"  in the Green Deal rather than definitely "removing them". Amber Rudd's speech should  clarify this, if anyone has read it carefully.

Ed Davey (Ed Davey!!) held forth with his usual breakneck-speed delivery of illogical claptrap, including the statement that renewables were a huge success under the coalition government. Apparently as electricity prices were forecast to be much higher but had dropped, this meant that the green subsidies cost less than they would have done otherwise. which made them really, really good value.

There are more comments on this on Unthreaded from BH readers quicker off the mark than me.

TM

 

Friday
Jul242015

'Ere we go, 'ere we go, 'ere we go...

 

Just in case you thought things were getting better....The Internationalist knows the end of the world is nigher than ever.

Of the many catastrophic consequences of climate change, ocean acidification may be the worst. The oceans, which cover 71 percent of the Earth’s surface, produce fifty percent of the oxygen we breathe. They are also the planet’s biggest carbon sink—absorbing 50 percent of anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions. Unfortunately, absorbing all that carbon is dramatically altering the ocean’s pH balance. Since the industrial revolution began, average acidity of the upper ocean has jumped 30 percent. The ocean is now more acidic than it has been for fifty million years. Unless CO2 emissions decline, ocean acidity could surge another 100 percent by the end of the century.

This slow-motion disaster threatens the survival of ocean life. Acidification is already stressing shellfish, corals, and plankton whose shells or skeletons are made of calcium carbonate. If these small creatures disappear, ocean food webs will collapse. Simultaneously, the sea temperatures are rising, as the ocean stores 90 percent of the energy from the warming Earth. Over the past century, the mean ocean surface temperature has increased 0.7 degrees Celsius. By 2100, it will rise another 3 degrees. Meanwhile, several hundred “dead zones”—areas with insufficient oxygen to support marine life—have emerged throughout the world.

This triple whammy —ocean acidification, warming, and deoxygenation—is placing unprecedented stress on species. Microbes, plankton, corals, mollusks, fish, and marine mammals are struggling to adapt to new ocean biochemistry, ecosystems, food webs, currents, and circulation. Unless humanity reverses course, the predicted “Sixth Extinction” will unfold not only on land, but in the sea

Thursday
Jul232015

Another one bites the dust

Emily Gosden has posted some more good news this afternoon at the Telegraph

Launched in 2013, the Green Deal was touted as a "revolution" in upgrading Britain’s old and draughty housing stock, designed to encourage millions of households to take out loans to install insulation and new boilers.

But on Thursday, with less than 10,000 loans in place, ministers pulled the plug and acknowledged the scheme would be seen as a "total flop".

The Department of Energy and Climate Change (Decc) said it would provide no further Government funding for the Green Deal Finance Company, which provides the loans, "in light of low take-up and concerns about industry standards". It had so far provided £59 million to the company.

All we need now (well, nearly all) is the end of the Climate Change Act.

TM

Updated 6.18pm

AAAAAGH! Harrabin on BBC Radio 4 PM programme has just declared that the Green Deal would have resulted in a reduced demand for new power stations.

 

Thursday
Jul232015

Wild waters of rewilding

There's a fascinating story in the Scotsman this morning. The Perthshire town of Alyth was one of many places around the UK that were affected by floods last week, and there were some extraordinary photos of the aftermath, with cars strewn across road, bearing witness to the ferocity of the torrent that hit the town. Residents are apparently now pointing fingers at two pet projects of environmentalists - beavers and fallen timber, left lying "to encourage biodiversity".

It's a bit early to say if this is true or not, but one to watch I would say. 

Thursday
Jul232015

Heretics 3, Jesuits 0

IPSO has published its latest judgement on a case brought by Bob Ward against David Rose, the third in as many years. This revolved around a story last year about GISS's claim that 2014 was the warmest on record and their failure to note the significant possibility that that it might not be.

I must say this seemed a relatively small point to me, but it clearly got Bob Ward's blood boiling, in the way that the Jesuits would get a bit upset over minor theological transgressions. It's not so much the details of the offence as the source of the challenge to authority that upsets. No quarter for heretics.

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Jul232015

Scottish wind

Nicola Sturgeon's  latest protest about the Westminster government's intention  to cut wind turbine subsidies  was reported by both the BBC Today programme  at 7.40am or so and by the Telegraph online this morning.

...the new UK Government should not change the public funding for onshore wind schemes “without agreement from Scottish ministers”

I'm glad to say the Telegraph's article by Scottish Political Editor Simon  Johnson was firmly on the critical side, including among other critical comments from other interested parties omitted by the BBC  and reported by the Telegraph.

[But] Holyrood’s energy committee heard how Scotland in course [sic] to lose 55 per cent of its electricity generating capacity,  leaving the country dependent on importing  power from south of the border.

Whether La Sturgeon's objection is made on political or eco-dogma grounds is a moot point. TM

 Update 9.46am 23.7.15

Apologies for quoting from  earlier dated article- the topic is still relevant though.

TM

Thursday
Jul232015

Rolling blackouts 

Don't miss the BBC Radio 4 programme at 11am this morning which will discuss the acute problem of rolling power blackouts  already occurring in  South Africa and the current solution- diesel generators.

TM

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