Category Archives: Global Warming

Experts

 

As anyone who reads this blog knows, I am not a big believer in global warming, to say the least. Both the Vancouver newspapers with a decidedly leftward tilt, however, are all in on AGW.

I used to get upset with them about publishing articles that were clearly not done by climate scientists but came from some US-based advocacy group. They were cleverly disguised to look like a scientific study but you could never figure out any scientific group that had actually performed it.

So, I’d write them an email asking what peer-reviewed study this article came from. I said it was lazy reporting for their so-called journalists to simple publish some press release they received from a California anti-carbon group. They would never publish any of my letters to the editor pointing out the disinformation from the AGW crowd.

2015 was a drought year in the Pacific NW. The big sea of unusually warm water sitting out in the middle of the Pacific Ocean called an El Nino condition caused an unusually hot and dry summer. The summer and early fall were marked by frequent and serious forest fires.

The flip side of the El Nino event is the La Nina condition with colder than normal masses of water in the central Pacific. This is part of a normal cycle called the ENSO or the El Nino Southern Oscillation and reverses every seven to twelve years. The NOAA website says “… the ENSO has large scale impacts on global weather and climate.”

The people who study this stuff were predicting last fall that the El Nino was falling apart and the La Nina was taking over. A La Nina year usually means a cooler and wetter year in the PNW. So, it baffled me why a purported “expert” on water resources would confidently predict another exceptionally dry year in which Vancouver would likely have to ration water and allocate more money to fight forest fires. The underlying assumption on his part was that global warming would cause drought and less rainfall. AGW does not cause droughts in the PNW but an El Nino year can and does frequently.

drought-crisis

One would hope that a “water expert” would know this fact. Apparently not. He confidently predicted that 2016 would be as dry and possibly worse, requiring rationing of water. “The Province” published his scare prediction on December 19 and ran a full-page headline stating, “Brace for Another Drought Crisis”. The teaser underneath stated, “Recent precipitation has replenished Metro Vancouver reservoirs but a water expert warns the worst is yet to come.”

I cut out the front page and the full-page article on the inside and set it aside. I said to myself, “Let see what actually happens.” I had just finished reading a book called “Future Babble” by Dan Gardner, a senior writer for the “Ottawa Citizen”. He had come to my attention a number of years ago when he wrote a 10 part series on drugs. Carefully researched and even-handedly written, I thought it was excellent. When I learned he had published a book, I had to read it.

Gardner carefully documented his study of “experts” and the success of their pontificated predictions on many subjects. He found that the experts were correct only about half the time and you could do just as well with a coin flip. He cites some highly public failures and how they shrug off their mistakes to make yet another sweeping prediction. Two examples among many in the book were Revi Batra who published a best selling book in 1985 called “The Great Depression of 1990.” Of course, that didn’t happen. Did he run off and hide from the press? Nope. He published numerous other books in subsequent years making pretty much the same predictions for future years and all did not happen.

Similarly, Paul Ehrlich who I have mentioned frequently, published “The Population Bomb” in 1968 predicting some 200 million people would die of starvation in the 1980’s. Obviously, did not happen, but did not deter him from continuing to predict and publish, appearing on talk shows and giving speeches. You gotta hand it to these guys, they have a lot of gall.

If Al Gore had been right, Florida would be underwater by now and the oceans would be 20 feet higher by the end of the century. But, the oceans are only rising less than 1/8th inch per year, the same pace since the end of the last ice age. He should miss it by 19 feet!

One expert in England predicted that children in school now would never have seen snow in their lifetimes. Nope. Wrong.

The La Nina took over in the central Pacific and it’s been a colder and wetter summer in the PNW as one would expect in a La Nina year. I checked with the various weather sites and BC has had a normal amount of moisture this year and September has been unusually wet this year. Subsequently, forest fires were minimal this summer.

Our water expert can join a long list of expert predictions that were totally wrong.

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Filed under Environmentalism, Global Warming, Uncategorized

Regarding Rachel

   Some of my readers have emailed expressing dismay at my Global Warming piece, calling it a “right wing rant”.  Based on my complaints about Ms. Carson and her book Silent Spring  that lead to the ban of DDT and the resulting death of millions in the poorer countries of the world, some readers have decided that I am both uncaring about the environment and “stuck in the 50s in my opinion of women”.  About this latter charge I confess utter mystification.

I assure the few people who may actually read this blog, that I care very much about the environment, like nearly all my fellow hunters and fishers.  This will be evident in an upcoming piece.  I do find fault with anti-capitalist, radical environmentalists who blindly follow dogma and are not swayed by accepted science or common sense.

About the stuck in the 50s charge…. Probably true.  I admired and respected women then and still do.

Ms. Carson remains an icon of the environmental community and is often credited with being the founder of that movement.  Fair enough.  But, why the reluctance to admit she might have been wrong about DDT?  One of my readers helpfully referred me to a website to defend RC.  One of the references in that article (A National Geographic piece entitled “Bedlam in the Blood” (about malaria) contained a quote from Dr. Robert Gwadz of the National Institute of Health.  He said, “Banning DDT may have killed 20 million people.”

This is from a reference supposedly defending Ms. Carson!  Another piece from the same site by John Tierney of the NY Times carries the title “Fateful Voice of a Generation Still Drowns Out Science”.  You can guess what that says about ol’ Rach.

We hear what we want to hear and find whatever confirms our prejudices, either on the Internet or in print.  A friend of mine years ago was a professor of marine biology at U of Miami Marine Laboratory.  He said our personal battle against our own prejudices was a constant process.  Once you get rid of one prejudice you adopt another. I am no different than anyone else in this regard.

But, pointing out Carson’s error of half a century ago is not the same thing as walking into a Wisconsin tavern and loudly proclaiming that Brett Favre was a lousy quarterback and should have retired years ago.  On second thought, maybe it is.

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Filed under DDT, Environmentalism, Global Warming, Uncategorized

A Big Melt

Midwesterners may “cling to their guns and religion” as candidate Obama alleged during the 2008 campaign. But it must also be acknowledged that liberals and the Obama Administration desperately cling to the theory of global warming despite a barrage of evidence suggesting the whole theory is a massive hoax.


As public opinion and concern has swung against them, AGW enthusiasts have become more and more shrill. Exhibit One in this phenomenon is Al Gore’s recent meltdown at the Aspen Institute where he addressed the Networks and Citizenship Panel. Bloated, red faced and with neck veins bulging, Gore delivered the following crude rant.


There’s no longer a shared reality. It’s no longer acceptable in mixed company – bi-partisan company- to use the goddamn word “climate.” Some of the exact same people
– I can go down a list of their names – are involved in this. And what do they do? They pay pseudo-scientists to pretend to be scientists to put out the message, “This climate thing is nonsense.” “Man-made C02 doesn’t trap heat.“ “It may be volcanoes.” Bullshit! “It may be sunspots.” Bullshit! “It’s not getting warmer.” Bullshit!

First of all, other than the obvious irony of having Gore overuse the word “bullshit”, something that has exemplified his whole career, one has to be stunned at his refusal to accept obvious
facts. Dr. Phil Jones who presided over the Climate Research Unit of the U. of E. Anglia, the outfit that got this whole hysterical movement going, admitted in Feb or 2010 that “… there has been no statistically significant warming in the last fifteen years.”


Say what?


He also admitted that he has “lost” all the raw data that produced Michael Mann’s famous “hockey stick” graph that got the socialists drooling over the prospect of taking over…. well, everything. Perhaps the dog ate his homework? (See “The New Deniers”, Dec 22, 2009 for specifics on the 3000 emails hacked from the CRU that exposed the fraud.)


In addition, there’s plenty of peer-reviewed science out there that shows C02 does not trap heat much, that volcanoes and the sun do have a great effect on climate. (See “Gaia is Pissed”, April 25,2010 for volcanoes). Also, you can check out the “Climate Audit” site for specifics
on the various studies.


Gore may be melting down because he’s going to have to split with his wife the considerable fortune he’s made being the guru of global warming. Tipper filed for divorce when she returned to their 20,000 sqft home in Nashville to find Al nude on the living room floor fornicating with a polar bear skin rug. OK, I just made that up. Maybe she just got tired of the boring clown or, being a Democrat, maybe he had an intern on the side?


Gore has made a pile of loot since leaving the White House with a net worth of some $2 million. 2008 estimates put the new number at over $100 million. His speaking fees variously estimated at $200,000 per and his many “green” investments have paid off handsomely. He got some $34 million of taxpayer money to start the Chicago Climate Exchange, a carbon trading operation, that promised to make billions if the Democrats came through with Cap and Trade legislation. When that didn’t happen and global warming fears cooled, the company folded. Poor Al is likely sweating his cash flow.


Meanwhile, the radicals at the EPA continue to pile on job killing regulations in their mad war on carbon. Lisa Jackson, EPA head, recently announced a new interpretation of old rules for clean air that would shut down 20% of the US coal generated electrical capacity. Estimated cost? 60,000 jobs and $129 billion. She was supposed to make these kinds of rule changes based on reports from the Clean Air Science Advisory Committee. She decided to go ahead a full two years before the report was due. Her justification? Saving lives.


The National Ambient Air Quality Study came out with a bogus report saying the rule changes would result in X number of “lives saved”. Really? That speculative crap sounds suspiciously like the “jobs saved” nonsense put out to justify the stimulus boondoggle. Donna Nelson, head
of the Public Utilities Commission in Texas, says the new rules will cause rolling blackouts in her state. Most likely many states will suffer the same fate.


This, however, should come as no surprise to anyone who is paying attention. Obama and Biden both promised in the campaign to shut down the coal industry. He happily said that he would bankrupt anyone who tried to build a coal fired electrical generating plant. Well, here ya go.


Unfortunately, it’s not just coal. The anti-carbon true believers in the current administration are now taking on the “fracking” technique that has unlocked vast sources of natural gas. Hydraulic fracturing, the pumping of liquids and chemicals miles deep into rock deposits, releases natural gas previously unavailable. Despite studies certifying it as environmentally harmless, the anti-carbonistas want to shut it down. Ironically, natural gas is the alternative to coal. Then too, let’s not forget the poor dune sagebrush lizard of West Texas. Environmentalists want to shut down oil drilling there by listing this useless critter as endangered.


Obama’s team wants to use regulations to achieve goals not wanted by the people of even the politicians. Jackson’s EPA has already promulgated 75 new job killing regulations through mid- 2011 at a cost of $38 billion. Total cost of federal regulation on an annual basis? $1.75 trillion.

When the lights go out in New York City and Washington, DC maybe the voters will demand the abolition of the EPA?

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Filed under Global Warming, Gore, Obama, Politics

Gaia Is Pissed

April 14th on the run up to Earth Day, Mother Gaia or maybe Mother Nature decided to show us who is boss by blowing the top off Iceland’s unpronounceable Mt. Eyjafjallajokull. It took the glacier sitting on top with it and sent a plume of volcanic gas and ash 5 to 7 miles high. As this cloud drifted over Western Europe, 100,000 flights got cancelled during a week causing massive disruption. (Note: I found several spellings for this volcano and one explanation. “Eyja = island, fjall = mountain and “joekull = glacier. Hereafter I will just call it Eyja)

Eyja last erupted in 1821 and that event lasted a year or two depending on which account you believe. It also erupted in 920 and 1612 and on each occasion within six months the adjacent Mt. Katla, the “witch volcano”, followed suit. Katla, topped by the Myrdalsjoekull glacier is reputed to be ten times larger than Eyja and last erupted in 1918. We can easily imagine what kind of mess would result if Katla decides to blow.

Iceland is home to hundreds of volcanoes and they go off whenever Mother Nature decides to give us a lesson in humility.

In 1783 Iceland’s huge Laki volcano erupted and the cloud of ash blanketed the globe causing massive crop failures and famine worldwide during a “year without summer” and an exceptionally harsh winter. This is climate change you can believe in.

History provides other examples of volcanoes dropping temperatures. Mt. Pinatubo in the Philippines, for example, is said to have dropped global temperatures by 1 degree F. Mt. Tambora in Indonesia went off in 1815 killing tens of thousands in the initial blast. More importantly, it caused what has been called “volcanic winter” and resulted in the worst famine in the 19th century in North American as well as Europe. Clearly, we have much more to fear from global cooling than global warming. Warming alarmists worry global temperatures will rise by a couple of degrees by the turn of the next century, while one of these angry mountains can change temperatures in a few seconds. And we can’t do a damn thing about it. Nor can we do anything about some unnamed and unseen asteroid presently hurtling through space aimed at Kansas. If you want to worry about climate change, give that one some thought. Can’t happen? Well, it’s happened before.

One Muslim cleric seems to have found an explanation. Mr. Hojjat ol-eslam Kazem Sediqi said in a recent statement that “women who do not dress modestly lead young men astray and spread adultery in society” cause earthquakes. Since earthquakes precede and seemingly trigger volcanic eruptions, it is safe to conclude that mini-skirts and skimpy tops cause volcanoes to erupt. This theory will be put to the test on Monday. Jen McCreight, a Purdue student, has organized a “Boobquake” event with 40,000 followers so far. They will be simultaneously exposing and shaking their boobs in an effort to induce an earthquake. If Katla chooses that day to explode, burkas may replace the bare midriff look overnight. God forbid.

Meanwhile, Harry Reid, a man not to be humbled by Mother Nature, plans to introduce the Cap and Trade legislation in the Senate on April 26th. This notwithstanding the revelations of the “ClimateGate” scandal or the confession by Phil Jones, the former head of the Climate Research Unit and main author of the UN’s IPCC report, that “there has been no statistically significant warming in the past fifteen years.” ‘Why worry about facts?’ say the Democrats. Let’s ram this job busting, economy-destroying piece of legislation through instead while we still have our jobs in the Senate. Makes sense. Might as well take over as much of the US economy as possible before the voters toss them out.

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Filed under Global Warming, Harry Reid, Volcano

The New Deniers

Skeptics of man made global warming have been called “deniers”, a name purposely chosen to tie them to “holocaust deniers”. In other words, nut cases refusing to recognize the obvious. Skeptics like me were held in contempt and shouted down by the true believers. Most skeptics kept their doubts about the doomsday predictions to themselves.

One would have thought that after the publication of over 3000 emails and reams of data either hacked or released by a whistle blower on November 17th from the Climate Research Unit of the University of East Anglia, that things would change. I naively expected that the scandal dubbed “ClimateGate” would anger journalists and editors and they would now aggressively investigate and report on what appears to be a massive fraud. HA! Silly me.

“The Vancouver Sun” reluctantly ran a brief report on “ClimateGate” a week or so after the story broke on the internet and then pretended it did not matter, running one global warming scare piece after another on the buildup to the climate conference in Copenhagen. Today they ran four pieces lamenting the failure of the UN conference to impose massive restrictions and taxes on Canada and the developed world.

The ClimateGate emails revealed that the dons at CRU had fudged and cherry picked the data, conspired to “peer review” each other’s work, frustrated FOI requests for other researchers to see their data and methods and pressured scientific journals to exclude articles critical of their positions. Now they claim they have “lost” the original data on which they based their research! They also wrote each other lamenting the inability of their theories to account for recent cooling. Pretty damning stuff and those defending the emails as simply ‘banter between scientists’ sounded more than a little lame.

Honest and diligent reporters should have smelled out this story years ago. Canadians Steve McIntyre and Dr. Ross McKitrick have been working on it for years and have written papers discrediting Dr. Michael Mann’s famous “hockey stick” graph widely used by alarmists. The graph showed a dramatic rise in temperatures in the last century and eliminated the Medieval Warming Period of 800 years ago. M and M, as the CRU scientists called them, discredited the hockey stick proxy data showing that they had cherry picked the data. (Recently Russia revealed the CRU had also selectively utilized the weather station data provided to them by Russia. CRU researchers only used 25% of the data, selecting the warmest locations.) McIntyre also made NASA back off from their contention that 1998 was the warmest year on record. It was actually 1934. NASA admitted their error. Did you read about any of this in your local newspaper or see it on TV? No, of course not. Should they take Al Gore’s Nobel Prize away and give it to McIntyre and McKitrick? Certainly.

You would think that when new evidence is presented a rational person would reevaluate their position. That does not seem to be the case with global warming (oops. Climate Change). And, with record breaking cold and massive snow dumps in Europe and North America even before winter’s official start (yesterday) one would expect some concern. Hey, it actually snowed in Houston and collected on the beaches in the south of France. Hello. Oh, I forgot, that’s climate change formerly known as global warming. Right.

There seem to be two camps that have a vested interest in perpetuating the global warming alarmism: The scientists who receive massive amounts of money from various governments to conduct their research. If scientists scream the world is coming to an end government opens the purse to fund the research. CRU received $20 million from the Brits. The US has doled out far more. This camp also includes those who invest in industries poised to gain from government funded alternative energy projects and those who can get in on the carbon trading schemes.

The other camp includes socialists who believe the solution to all the ills of society can be rectified by a world government. Craig McInnes wrote a piece in today’s Sun (After Copenhagen: Political Climate Change Begins at Home). He summed it up for us with this quote: “What Copenhagen demonstrates again is that we don’t have a system of international governance that allows a global interest to override national interests…” Just what Canadians need, the UN telling us how many cow (or moose) farts are allowed, how we can heat or light our homes or whether we can barbecue a steak. If you think about the UN Food for Oil scandal or the ongoing slaughter in Darfur you can probably guess how well global governance might work out.

What about the editors and journalists, you might ask? I suppose some are just lazy or hired to be the “environmental reporter” inclined to lean left and green. They have tended to just parrot news releases and propaganda put out by environmental groups without doing any serious checking of the facts. Hey, scary stuff sells papers. Don’t rock the boat.

If you really want to get information on global warming you have only to go to the internet. (Journalist take note.) You can start by viewing a special report by Fox News called “Global Warming, Or a Lot of Hot Air”. It ran last Sunday but it’s now posted on YouTube (part 1 of many–look for other links). If I could find it, you can. Next I would suggest Steve McIntyre’s site, Climate Audit and then Climate Depot. If you still believe in global warming after a little honest research God love ya. You’re a New Denier.

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Filed under Global Warming, Politics

Another Blue Dress Moment?

We might all remember the moment it was discovered that Monica’s famed blue dress had a generous dollop of Clinton’s “DNA” on it. (DNA being the euphemism preferred by the press for semen.) In a heart beat all of Clinton’s lies about ‘not having sex with that woman’ were exposed… unless, of course, one were willing to accept the argument that blow jobs were not actually sex. My guess is that 99% of all teenaged males were happy to agree with this thesis. The rest of us? Not so much.

Late on November 19 another “blue dress moment” occurred when it was discovered that over 3000 emails and data files had been either hacked or posted by an insider from the computers of the University of East Anglia Climate Research Unit. All of the information is now all over the internet. The British government has given the scientists at the CRU over $20 million to do research on global warming. Dr. Phil Jones, the CRU Director has confirmed that the emails are genuine.


What the emails have revealed so far is:


1). They have massaged the data in the past to get desired results and openly discuss among themselves how to manipulate the data to eliminate the recent global cooling.


2). They conspired to prevent the release of raw data requested under the FOIA, or to disclose their methods and source code to other scientists so that their work and conclusions could be verified.

3). Only studies favorable to the theory of global warming were published and the CRU scientists and their allies punished and threatened editors of journals that published contrary science.


Here’s a sample email from Dr. Phil Jones to other scientists. “I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in real temperatures to each series for the last 20 years (i.e. From 1981 onward) and from 1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline.”


“Mike” refers to Michael Mann who published his famous and extensively promoted “hockey stick” graph in “Nature” magazine. This supposedly depicted a near vertical up tick of global temperatures in recent decades. Al Gore and others used Mann’s work to predict the end of the World. This graph was later widely discredited as nearly any data plugged into Dr. Mann’s model produced the hockey stick result.


“Keith” refers to Keith Briffa who published a study of tree ring data from Yamal, Russia purporting to show unprecedented warming in the last century. Forced by a FOIA request to release his data to Steve McIntyre of Climate Audit, it was easily spotted as a fraud accomplished by cherry picking and manipulating the data. (US Climate Reports: They Lie). A number of the released emails acknowledge the deception and discuss damage control and the continued wisdom of withholding data.


Some of the other emails derided skeptical scientists and one even celebrated the death of one of their vocal critics. Being an outspoken skeptic of global warming (frequently called “deniers”) has been an unpopular position, to say the least. A few weeks ago I wrote a letter to the editor of the “Vancouver Sun” criticizing a piece by a columnist who regularly writes doomsday articles on global warming. From the angry reaction I received you would think that I had written endorsing the joys of pedophilia.


While the news was reported by some press outlets, it has been largely ignored by the Main Stream Media. Of course, they are heavily invested in advancing the “settled science” of AGW and would be embarrassed to admit that they have been duped by a handful of researchers more interested in advancing a political agenda than objective science. One would hope that they would now want to reveal this information and promote a true open and honest debate on the science of global warming. John Coleman, the founder of the Weather Channel, says he has a petition signed by 30,000 scientists and meteorologists who want that debate.


This is especially important now as a cap and trade bill has already passed the House and a companion bill is ready in the Senate. Either one of those, if enacted, will seriously damage the US economy and impose enormous costs on everyone. Also, the Climate Conference in Copenhagen scheduled for next month proposes even more draconian rules, taxes and even surrender of sovereignty to the UN. It would certainly appear that a One World Socialist government has been the goal of the AGW proponents all along. As some call them: “watermelon environmentalists”….. Green on the outside, red on the inside.


For further reading on this subject, check out: Climate Audit, Wattsupwiththat or Pajamas Media (Charles Martin).

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Filed under Cap and Trade, Clinton, Global Warming

Earth Day

As I write this another Earth Day has come and gone. It began in Philadelphia in 1970, supposedly started by Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson and has, over the years, grown into a worldwide movement. I say supposedly because a man by the name of Ira Einhorn, a sixties radical–hippie, guru, anti-war activist and darling of the left–claimed to be the founder himself. He was at least a key organizer and MC of the first event, but was later disowned by the movement for his inconvenient killing of his girl friend, Holly Maddux. This was discovered 18 months after he had stuffed her body in a steamer trunk and stored it in his apartment. The neighbors finally complained about the smell and liquid dripping through the ceiling. Talk about an environmental issue. Ira had plenty of defenders on the left and managed to get out on $40,000 bail whereupon he promptly disappeared. In the 80s he turned up in France and avoided extradition until the late 90s when he was convicted and sent off to jail.

I would be the last to dispute that Earth Day and the raising of concern about the environment has done a lot of good over the decades. Much has been accomplished: the air and water have been cleaned up, sewage issues dealt with, spills of noxious chemicals stopped, mining waste controlled and landfills better managed. Although from the crap you see strewn along the highways and the graffiti on every flat surface in major cities (like this river in Manila), you get the feeling that not everyone has gotten the word.

I have always thought of myself as a “conservationist”. Indeed, my major in college (marine biology) fell under the supervision of the Conservation Department at Cornell. But, who doesn’t support clean air and water as well as the wise stewardship of our natural resources? I would not like to be called an “environmentalist” however. They have gone off the deep end with another agenda. As Stephen Hayward of the Pacific Resources Institute and author of the annual “Leading Environmental Indicators” states, “The environmental movement has been taken over by anti-capitalists and extremists. The agenda is now pulling down market economics, raising up central planning for egalitarian goals, forced lifestyle changes and the vilification- in hopes of eliminating- signs of wealth. Ironically, the creation of wealth allows the resources to invest in clean up.”

Indeed, the constant drumbeat that the environment is in grave danger from the left and the media has been effective. A poll commissioned by Habitat Heroes and conducted by Opinion Research found that 75% of blacks and 65% of Hispanics believe the planet will be irrevocably damaged by the time they reach adulthood. The schools have been drenching the children in eco-propaganda, laments Meghan Cox Gurdon in a piece for the WSJ (Taste Page, 4/17/09). This, she asserts, “causes stress that their smallest decision could have catastrophic effects on the globe.” [Another great article by the same author.]

She points out that children’s books have gotten in on the act. One of my favorite funny authors, Carl Hiaasen, has written several children’s books (Hoot, Flush, Scat) that feature eco-themes where young eco-warriors thwart fat, evil businessmen who damage the environment. Trite, but effective.

Mark Levin in his runaway best seller “Liberty and Tyranny” explains the motivation of the modern environmental movement in clear concise terms. He calls them “enviro-statists”. BTW, everyone should read this book… even my liberal friends (maybe especially my liberal friends). He explains a great deal about where we are and how we got there.

While the “Green” movement has followed the trajectory of many other fads and been championed to the point of nausea, the radical environmentalist have clearly gained the upper hand in promoting their agenda. Obama has loaded his cabinet with true believers starting with “Energy Czar”, Carol Browner. She served as a Gore protégé and once worked for Ralph Nader. She was also one of 14 leaders of Socialist International’s Committee for Sustained World Society that calls for “global governance”. Ken Salazar at Interior is slowly but systematically shutting down any hope of drilling for more oil. Stephen Chu, Energy Secretary and Lisa Jackson at EPA are both global warming firm believers and are actively promoting the proposed Cap and Trade legislation and/or advocating the restrictions on carbon emissions through EPA mandates.

They are not much interested in this just in from the four agencies that track the Earth’s temperatures: Hadley Climate Research Unit in Britain, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies in NY, Christy Group at the U of Alabama and Remote Sensing Systems in CA. All four report that the Earth cooled in 2007 by 0.7C, the fastest drop on record. There has been no warming for the last 9 years. Last week Gore testified before Congress still claiming that the oceans will rise 20 feet and we are all doomed. Geeze, Al, get a grip. According to the latest poll, only about 30% of the US populace now believe that human activity has any impact on climate change.

Despite predictions from government and private sources that draconian restrictions on carbon emissions will result in huge increases in electricity and energy costs with concurrent job losses, the Administration persists in promoting their “renewable energy” (Solar and wind. Nuclear does not count even though it emits no CO2) program. Conservative estimates show that electricity prices will increase by 30% by 2020 and 101-120% by 2030. Job losses come in at 1.5 million by 2020.

Obama touts Germany as the poster child on how we should employ a renewable energy program. OK, let’s take a look.

Alex Alexiev in a NR article (“Green Bubbles Bursting”) points out that Germany achieved 15% of their electricity needs from renewables by offering that source seven times the wholesale price from conventional producers. Electricity prices went up 38% in one year. (2006-07) This, of course, does not include the infrastructure cost borne by the government. Part of the problem of renewables is the intermittent nature of the wind and sun. (News flash: the sun does not shine at night). These sources need to be backed up by conventional, usually gas fired, plants to provide energy to the grid.

There are other examples of European countries trying the green route but seeing the costs and irrationality, are now backing off. In Spain, another example cited by Obama, the Universidad Ray Juan Carlos calculates that for every “green job” created by their renewable program there were 2.5 jobs destroyed elsewhere in the economy.

There are also significant signs that Europeans have cast off their anti-nuclear hysteria and are planning on relying on nuclear energy for their future. Sweden has changed course, as has Italy that plans to get 25% of its future power from 8 new nuclear reactors. Great Britain will build 10 new reactors and even the Ukraine, site of the infamous Chernobyl disaster, plans 11 new reactors by 2030. Poland, Finland, Bulgaria and Romania are either planning or building new reactors. India plans to go from 3% to 45% nuclear with 40 new reactors, China plans a seven-fold increase and Japan wants to double from 30% nuclear.

Meanwhile, here in the USA nuclear is off the table while the agenda remains controlled by the hysterical environmental lobbies. Even as the Republicans timidly promote nuclear they know their suggestions fall on deaf ears. The primary tool of the environmentalists is litigation and the “citizen lawsuit provisions” of environmental law allow well-funded groups to bring lawsuits in the public’s name. They can and will hold up any project that does not fit their narrow theology.

A few Democrat Senators have been getting cold feet over the Cap and Trade legislation. As Duncan Currie points out in his NR piece, “Robbing Bismarck to Pay Boston”, many states get most of their electricity from coal fired plants, from a high of 97.8% in W. VA to 85% for many Midwestern states. Some states like CA get none or nearly none. These Senators realize that their states will be disproportionately impacted. Not good for re-election to vote for this turkey. The recent decision by the EPA declaring CO2 a hazard to health is meant to browbeat these reluctant Senators into line. Senator Boxer recently declared that if the Senate does not pass C & T, she would urge the EPA to act to regulate carbon.

Just what we need: economic and energy policy by fiat.

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Filed under Cap and Trade, Czars, Earth Day, Environmentalism, Global Warming, Obama, Politics

Let’s Have the Debate

Journalist Peter Foster reports in the “National Post” today that he is heading off to New York City to attend the 2009 International Conference on Climate Change. Dubbed the largest ever gathering of climate change skeptics, the title of the event is: “Global Warming: Was it Ever Really a Crisis?” Dozens of presenters from the scientific community will offer papers disputing the conventional wisdom that global warming exists and that, in any event, is not a threat to humanity. Presumably, (and hopefully) they will discuss the economic folly of promoting drastic measures in the midst of a worldwide recession.

I suspect that this conference will not get even a passing reference in the mainstream media. That would prove embarrassing to the media and Obama Administration as they push forward with their plans to impose a $650 billion cap and trade regime (carbon tax) on the American people. Even Obama and his fellow socialists admit that energy costs will skyrocket, while they are less forthright in admitting that this war on CO2 amounts to a huge tax increase on everyone. No one in support of this scheme wants to confess that poorer citizens will be hardest hit. That famous 13 bucks a week in tax breaks (falling to $7.10 in 2010) for lower income Americans will quickly evaporate as the cost of everything goes up…. except the stock market, of course. That will be going down and so will the job market as industries flee the country. You really have to wonder if these guys have a clue. Or maybe, (and God I hate to say this) it’s intentional. Can it be possible that they hate business so much that they would intentionally destroy the American economy? When ideology trumps reason and science you have to wonder.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the pond in Merry Old England where they are still seething over the dissing of PM Gordon Brown by the White House, another conference is taking place. This one at the University of the West of England in Bristol brings together psychologists, sociologists and eco-gurus and will explore the Mental Disorder of “climate change denial”.
Yes indeed, the 650 certified meteorologists and climate scientists on the US Senate compilation of climate cataclysm skeptics and the 32,000 scientists who signed the Oregon Petition saying they dispute that humans are causing climate change are certifiably nuts. Hold on while I see if I can find a straight jacket on eBay.

Foster dubs this group climate true believers adherents of a “global state religion” or “eco-shariah” and anyone disagreeing with accepted dogma in need of serious psychological treatment. Like the medieval Christianity, Islamic fundamentalists or communist dissenters, non-believers need to be tortured (re-educated?) until they accept the true faith. Perhaps a little electro-shock therapy would do the trick?

This sort of thinking lends a lot of credence to the late Michael Crichton’s contention that modern society has embraced environmentalism as a secular religion. Only a true believer refuses to look at scientific evidence with an open mind.

One thing remains clear, no one in the Obama Administration wants to have a debate about the validity of global warming. (Al Gore doesn’t want to debate anyone on the science either.) And, they certainly don’t want to have a vote on this massive tax increase. They can avoid that messy confrontation by simply imposing cap and trade through the regulatory auspices of the EPA and/or regulations under the ESP (Endangered Species Act. Remember those “endangered” polar bears?) Having a debate would expose millions of people to the scientific evidence and raise the question of whether this is about saving the planet or simply a massive tax and power grab.

Can you say taxation without representation?

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Filed under Global Warming, Obama, Politics, Tea Party

What If They’re Wrong?

Vancouver recorded the lowest temperature in forty years last night. Tonight we await the arrival of a blizzard that has already struck Portland and Seattle. This past week it snowed in Las Vegas, Houston and Malibu. My cousin who lives outside of San Diego sent me pictures of snow on the hills near his home.

This is, to say the least, highly unusual stuff.

Of course, Minnesota, Wisconsin and the East are getting whacked with vicious winter storms, but that’s normal. What is not normal is that winter has not yet officially arrived. Starts tomorrow.

Since this has started out to be a record breaking cold winter you might well imagine my surprise when the environmental clergy announced that a necessary step in curbing the planet-threatening advance of global warming would be the taxation of cow farts. Yes indeed, bovine flatulence, we are told, represents a large contributor to greenhouse gases. A tax on each offending cow seems to be the only idea on the table.

My entrepreneurial mind immediately clicked with an alternative. Why not, I mused, instead insert a tube into the anus of each cow and attach to it an inflatable balloon? The captured methane could then be collected and burned to generate electricity! Hey, it’s renewable energy and that’s what we’re looking for, right? I can see no flaw in this proposal.

Having quickly dealt with cow farts, a sacrilegious thought occurred to me: What if these guys are wrong about global warming? What if, instead of warming the planet is actually cooling? What if the school of science that links previous cycles of solar activity (sunspots) to warming and cooling periods on Earth are right and the sun determines these things, not whatever Man may or may not do? The evidence suggests we should give it some consideration… not to mention looking out the window and checking out the temp and snow depth from time to time.

The Maunder Minimum, an extended period of low sunspot activity occurred between 1645 and 1715 and coincides with the Little Ice Age. Cooling and warming periods also correlate with the Medieval Minimum (1040 to 1080) and Medieval Maximum (1100 to 1250) although one has to wonder who was measuring this stuff. Scientists also claim that solar cycles correlate perfectly with warming and cooling periods on Mars. Since I have heard no reports on the discovery of SUVs on Mars, I think we can pretty much rule out human activity having much to do with it.

Solar activity comes and goes on roughly an eleven-year cycle and on that pace does not have a significant impact as the warming and cooling effects get dampened somewhat by the oceans. You may remember from 8th grade science that the oceans cover about 75% of the globe…. A big heat sink. When the sun refuses to adhere to the eleven-year cycle, things can get out of hand. The question: will the current minimum in sunspot activity be a short one, or will we be in for the next ice age?

Bjorn Lonborg in The Skeptical Environmentalist points out that global cooling is a far bigger problem than global warming. Shorter growing seasons and less land mass available for cultivation make food an issue. And, he points out, far more people today die as a result of cold than heat. The consensus among scientists holds that by the end of the century, if global warming were to continue at the pace of the last 50 years, that the Earth would increase in temperature by 2 degrees and the oceans would rise by 8 inches. Not a big problem, and may actually be a benefit as more of the northern latitudes become available for food production.

President-elect Obama promised during the campaign to “save the planet and stop the oceans from rising”. (No point in setting modest goals.) With that in mind, he has loaded his incoming administration with global warming and anti-carbon true believers. They will certainly pursue a series of policies to battle global warming and reduce our national carbon footprint. I think it is worth asking if this is exactly the wrong prescription for what ails us? What if Al Gore and his acolytes are exactly wrong and the Earth is getting colder? What if instead of shutting down coal fired electrical plants and restricting oil drilling we should be doing the opposite, just so we can stay warm in the next decade? What if instead of propping up the auto industry we should be helping out the snowshoe industry? It’s something to think about.

By the way, my wife just informed me our water pipes are frozen in the upstairs bathroom.

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Stupid is as Stupid Does

The great American philosopher, Forest Gump uttered those memorable words. He also said, “Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you will get.” I can’t help but think of these two gems when I ponder what the new Obama Administration and the new solidly Democrat Congress will do in the coming year.

From the appointments we’ve seen so far it seems the “Change We Can Believe In” amounts to rehiring all the guys from the Clinton team. If memory serves Clinton was quite radical in his first two years… until the alarmed electorate voted in a Republican Congress in 1996. Clinton then got religion and governed more like the centrist he claimed to be.

Observers have tried to be optimistic that BHO, Pelosi and Reid would show some restraint with the economy in a shambles, but recent comments from the anointed ones do not inspire confidence. On the economic front it looks like the only idea anyone has is to throw more and more money at the problem. Damn the torpedoes of inflation or the ice burgs of government ownership of major industries. Don’t worry about the distant shoals of debt. Open the valves of spending. Full speed ahead!

Once the new Congress gets sworn in and get their furniture rearranged we should expect quick action on two Democrat pet projects: the Employee Free Choice Act and the Fairness Doctrine. These two turkeys could only have been named by Orwell’s Ministry of Truth for there is no “free choice” in the former or “fairness” in the latter.

The EFC Act is a sop to the unions who love the Democrats unconditionally and give them millions. Better known as the Card Check bill it makes it substantially easier to organize a union shop. Less than 10% of the US workforce is currently unionized, mostly government employees and workers in major industries. Union shops like automobile manufacturers and airlines have been falling like flies lately and entrenched unions rightly deserve a lot of the blame. Government unions produce no measurable product and even if they do (like the teachers unions) and the product is crap, they persist. This does not suggest greater unionization is a wonderful idea in this time of economic trouble.

The Fairness Doctrine is only designed to put conservative talk radio out of business. The left already controls the mainstream media…. TV, Hollywood and the major newspapers. This violation of the 1st Amendment would silence any dissent of the left wing agenda.

While some of Obama’s economic team may have convinced him that raising taxes during a recession is a formula for financial disaster, he seems determined to push ahead with his fight against global warming with his Cap and Trade program. He said recently, “[we] will establish strong annual targets that set us on a course to reduce emissions to their 1990 levels by 2020 and reduce them an additional 80% by 2050.” Remember, Obama promised during the campaign to bankrupt anyone who attempted to build a coal fired power plant.

VP candidate Biden in one of his memorable gaffs said, “We’re not supporting clean coal” and “…no coal plants here in America.” Harry Reid, Senate Majority Leader and dipshit buffoon, once said, “That is, coal makes us sick, oil makes us sick; it’s global warming. It’s ruining our country; it’s ruining our World. We’ve got to stop using fossil fuel.” Harry and BHO probably never bothered to check, but the US gets 85% of its energy needs from fossil fuels and 50% of the US electrical power is supplied by coal plants. Do they really believe that they can replace fossil fuel with solar and wind power? Does anyone believe that the radical environmentalists will ever allow the Democrats to build a single nuclear plant? Their only hope of replacing coal is nuclear and they can’t go there.

The significant phrase in Obama’s quote above is “strong annual targets”. That suggests to me that he plans to use the EPA to regulate greenhouse gas emissions and implement his Cap and Trade dreams through that behemoth. The EPA has already prepared an 18,000-page Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) document regulating every emitting source from coal plants to lawn mowers. It amounts to a tax on energy, will cost trillions and wipe out jobs by the millions. Estimates from the Heritage Foundation suggest net job losses (that’s after you add in the “green” jobs created) at 500,000 per year and a cost of $5000 per household. American companies will be leaving the country in droves.

While this madness continues to rumble down the tracks we get this update on global warming from the US National Climatic Data Center. Seems the global temperature went DOWN in 2008 with some parts of the world seeing snow for the first time in memory. 2008 saw record snowfalls in China and Canada (Toronto’s Feb. snowfall the most since 1950). Sea ice build up in Antarctica was the largest in 30 years and even the much-discussed Artic saw increases of 10 to 20cm of ice. Nothing in yet from the polar bears.

[Editor’s note: In April 2007, the news release about the dire situation of the Polar Bear was exposed by an Australian journalist as a hoax. The photo was not taken by Canadian environmentalists, but taken by a marine biology student more than two years before in the month of August–when ice caps are naturally melting–and the bear was within easy swimming distance of larger chunks of land; it was released by the AP along with the introduction of the UN’s Global Warming Report.]

[Also, there are more reports from a group of international scientists on the global warming nonsense.]

According to Kenneth Tapping of the Canadian National Research Council, solar activity is way down. “The last time the sun was this inactive, Earth suffered the Little Ice Age that lasted five centuries and ended in 1850.” Gee, maybe the sun has something to do with global warming? OK, one winter does not an ice age make. But, it should give everyone a reason to look a little more critically at the absurd contortions of the global warming fanatics. More importantly, it should give our politicians pause before imposing an economy destroying policy on North America. You’d think, but I’m not betting on it.

Don’t count on the Democrats allowing any more drilling for oil or gas either. That’s way too logical.

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Filed under Cap and Trade, Clinton, Fairness Doctrine, Global Warming, Politics