Archive for Climate Change

Liberal Fascist Professor Wants Climate Deniers In Jail

This will happen someday.

The importance of clearly communicating science to the public should not be underestimated. Accurately understanding our natural environment and sharing that information can be a matter of life or death. When it comes to global warming, much of the public remains in denial about a set of facts that the majority of scientists clearly agree on. With such high stakes, an organised campaign funding misinformation ought to be considered criminally negligent.


Many scientists recognize these civic and moral obligations. Climatologist Michael Mann is a good example; Mann has recently made the case for public engagement in a powerful New York Times opinion piece: If You See Something Say Something.

[Here he is discussing the Italian earthquake in 2009, in which scientists were imprisoned for failing to warn the public that a devastating earthquake was possible - Aggie]
If those with a financial or political interest in inaction had funded an organised campaign to discredit the consensus findings of seismology, and for that reason no preparations were made, then many of us would agree that the financiers of the denialist campaign were criminally responsible for the consequences of that campaign. I submit that this is just what is happening with the current, well documented funding of global warming denialism.

More deaths can already be attributed to climate change than the L’Aquila earthquake and we can be certain that deaths from climate change will continue to rise with global warming. Nonetheless, climate denial remains a serious deterrent against meaningful political action in the very countries most responsible for the crisis.

Climate denial funding

We have good reason to consider the funding of climate denial to be criminally and morally negligent. The charge of criminal and moral negligence ought to extend to all activities of the climate deniers who receive funding as part of a sustained campaign to undermine the public’s understanding of scientific consensus.

Criminal negligence is normally understood to result from failures to avoid reasonably foreseeable harms, or the threat of harms to public safety, consequent of certain activities. Those funding climate denial campaigns can reasonably predict the public’s diminished ability to respond to climate change as a result of their behaviour. Indeed, public uncertainty regarding climate science, and the resulting failure to respond to climate change, is the intentional aim of politically and financially motivated denialists.

My argument probably raises an understandable, if misguided, concern regarding free speech. We must make the critical distinction between the protected voicing of one’s unpopular beliefs, and the funding of a strategically organised campaign to undermine the public’s ability to develop and voice informed opinions. Protecting the latter as a form of free speech stretches the definition of free speech to a degree that undermines the very concept.

What are we to make of those behind the well documented corporate funding of global warming denial? Those who purposefully strive to make sure “inexact, incomplete and contradictory information” is given to the public? I believe we understand them correctly when we know them to be not only corrupt and deceitful, but criminally negligent in their willful disregard for human life. It is time for modern societies to interpret and update their legal systems accordingly.

We are turning into a fable about a society that destroyed itself through its own stupidity. The Little Red Hen or something out of Aesop. Just imagine a professor writing something from a conservative perspective (I know – that will never happen) and suggesting that the other guys be tossed in jail. We are living the Salem With Trials. I keep assuming that this craziness will pass, but I have had to accept that it won’t until things get even crazier.

- Aggie

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More Climate Change BS

Even the NY Times reports that the drought in California might not be caused by “climate change”

And if the NY Times is doubtful, that means the whole scam is collapsing.

In delivering aid to drought-stricken California last week, President Obama and his aides cited the state as an example of what could be in store for much of the rest of the country as human-caused climate change intensifies.

But in doing so, they were pushing at the boundaries of scientific knowledge about the relationship between climate change and drought. While a trend of increasing drought that may be linked to global warming has been documented in some regions, including parts of the Mediterranean and in the Southwestern United States, there is no scientific consensus yet that it is a worldwide phenomenon. Nor is there definitive evidence that it is causing California’s problems.

“I’m pretty sure the severity of this thing is due to natural variability,” said Richard Seager, a climate scientist who studies water issues at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University.

To be sure, 2013 was the driest year in 119 years of record keeping in California. But extreme droughts have happened in the state before, and the experts say this one bears a notable resemblance to some of those, including a crippling drought in 1976 and 1977.

Over all, drought seems to be decreasing in the central United States and certain other parts of the world, though that is entirely consistent with the longstanding prediction that wet areas of the world will get wetter in a warming climate, even as the dry ones get drier.

What may be different about this drought is that, whatever the cause, the effects appear to have been made worse by climatic warming. And in making that case last week, scientists said, the administration was on solid ground.

California has been warming along with most regions of the United States, and temperatures in recent months have been markedly higher than during the 1976-77 drought. In fact, for some of the state’s most important agricultural regions, summer lasted practically into January, with high temperatures of 10 or 15 degrees above normal on some days.

The consequence, scientists say, has been that any moisture the state does get evaporates more rapidly, intensifying the effects of the drought on agriculture in particular. “We are going through a pattern we’ve seen before, but we’re doing it in a warmer environment,” said Michael Anderson, the California state climatologist.

The White House science adviser, John P. Holdren, said in a briefing last week: “Scientifically, no single episode of extreme weather, no storm, no flood, no drought can be said to have been caused by global climate change. But the global climate has now been so extensively impacted by the human-caused buildup of greenhouse gases that weather practically everywhere is being influenced by climate change.”
[In other words, there is no null hypothesis, something that defines scientific inquiry. We cannot say whether or not something is happening without defining what the world would look like if it wasn't happening, if the hypothesis was incorrect or "null". That is another way of saying that this administration is idiotic. - Aggie]

If you want to read some more Alarmist Stuff, go to the link. BTW, I’ve also heard that California is diverting water to a region that has a lot of rare smelts (fish) and thus making life even more miserable for the farmers. Big surprise.

- Aggie

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Let’s Change The Subject!

Obama orders Global Warming readiness initiative

Typical.

President Obama issued an executive order Friday directing a government-wide effort to boost preparation in states and local communities for the impact of global warming.

The action orders federal agencies to work with states to build “resilience” against major storms and other weather extremes. For example, the president’s order directs that infrastructure projects like bridges and flood control take into consideration climate conditions of the future, which might require building structures larger or stronger — and likely at a higher price tag.

“The impacts of climate change — including an increase in prolonged periods of excessively high temperatures, more heavy downpours, an increase in wildfires, more severe droughts, permafrost thawing, ocean acidification and sea-level rise — are already affecting communities, natural resources, ecosystems, economies and public health across the nation,” the presidential order said. “The federal government must build on recent progress and pursue new strategies to improve the nation’s preparedness and resilience.”

What a dolt. Yes, it is good to be ready for storms – ask any Boy Scout. And fine with me if we decide to build to unnecessarily high levels, thereby giving more money to people in the construction industry. A lot of Americans depend on that industry to put bread on the family table. But it is another dumb way to waste money.

- Aggie

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Unsettled Science

Roasting or flooding: what they call “climate”, I call “weather”.

The Met Office has been accused of damaging the UK’s tourism industry over its prediction last week that Britain faces the likelihood of a decade of soggy summers – because just three years ago it told us to prepare for repeats of the drought of 1976.

In May 2010 its climate extremes scientist Eleanor Burke warned we would roast in the summer months and be faced with tap water bans.

Yet last week yet another glimpse into the future by Met Office experts and colleagues from leading UK universities suggested rainy summers are on the cards for the foreseeable future.

Even more recently – in January 2012 – the government’s first Climate Change Risk Assessment, compiled with the help of Met Office scientists, predicted a decrease in summer rainfall over coming decades and sizzling sunshine that would persuade holidaymakers to stay at home rather than head for the Mediterranean.

But last week meteorologists at a Met Office conference into climate change in Exeter said a warmer North Atlantic meant Britain faced a higher chance of wet summers for up to ten years.

The anger has emerged most strongly in the South West – the most popular holiday-at-home destination for Britons – where tourism leaders say a bad summer forecast wipes out £300million worth of income in Devon and Cornwall alone.

Visit Cornwall head Malcolm Bell, said: ‘I wish that these so-called experts would keep their mouths shut.

‘In recent years the Met Office got the “barbecue summer” wrong, the hosepipe ban wrong – their credibility is shot. So why not just shut up.’

Because there’s no money in just shutting up. No one gets a grant by shutting up. No one gets published in peer-reviewed journals (with hot weathergirl centerfolds) by shutting up. In Britain, as in America and the rest of the world, just live your lives and let these boys and girls cry wolf as much as they like. No one’s listening anymore.

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Global Cooling Blamed For Tornado Outbreak, Mass Starvation, Etc.

In 1975

I actually remember the panic about the earth cooling and the mass starvation to follow. It was in the period of ZPG (Zero Population Growth)… remember that? Back then, the Know-It-All Left insisted that we should limit our family size to just two children, ensuring that we wouldn’t strain the planet, which was going through a massive cooling phase. They figured we’d all die of starvation anyway. There was enormous peer pressure to comply.

Someone else recalls some of this stuff:

cooling 1

cooling 2

cooling 3

The same ilk is terrifying us now about the ocean’s rise, the hot weather, the cold weather, tornadoes and hurricanes, good crops, bad crops – it all means “Global Weirding”. Yes indeed, “Global Weirding”, because Global Warming was a bust, as was Climate Change.

- Aggie

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When Hilo Freezes Over

Not so far-fetched:

A third low temperature record has fallen as cold north winds bring unseasonably cool temperatures to the islands.

Wednesday’s low temperature of 59 degrees at the Lihue Airport broke a record low temperature set in 1956 of 60 degrees for this date.

It’s the third low temperature record to fall in the last couple of days.

The temperature at Honolulu International Airport dropped to 61 degrees Tuesday morning, below the date’s previous record of 62 degrees set in 2002.

The lowest temperature ever recorded in Honolulu is 52 degrees, marked on Jan. 20, 1969. Coincidentally, the coldest temperature ever recorded in Lihue — 50 degrees — falls on the same date.

It’s also cold on Hawaii island, where thousands are gathering this week for the annual Merrie Monarch Festival celebrating hula and Hawaiian culture.

Temperatures dipped to 58 degrees at Hilo Airport Tuesday morning, lower than the previous record of 60 degrees set in 1953.

They’re doing the hula just to keep warm!

Somewhere, an Inuit is laughing his ass off. Who took the wrong turn out of Asia now, coconut breath?!

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Climate Deniers

Hah!

There are few things sadder than the “climate denier.” He ignores the data and neglects the latest science. His rhetoric and policy proposals are dangerously disconnected from reality. He can’t recalibrate to take account of the latest evidence because, well, he’s a denier.

The new climate deniers are the liberals who, despite their obsession with climate change, have managed to miss the biggest story in climate science, which is that there hasn’t been any global warming for about a decade and a half.

“Over the past 15 years air temperatures at the Earth’s surface have been flat while greenhouse-gas emissions have continued to soar,” The Economist writes. “The world added roughly 100 billion tons of carbon to the atmosphere between 2000 and 2010. That is about a quarter of all the CO2 put there by humanity since 1750.” Yet, no more warming.

The Economist has been decidedly alarmist on global warming through the years, so it deserves credit for pausing to consider why the warming trend it expected to continue has mysteriously stalled out.

The deniers feel no such compunction. They speak as if it is still the late 1990s, when measurements of global temperature had been rising for two decades. In his State of the Union address, President Barack Obama said that “we can choose to believe in the overwhelming judgment of science and act before it’s too late.” In a passage devoted to global warming, though, he didn’t mention the latest trend in global warming.

A denier feels the same righteous sense of certitude now, when warming has stopped, as he did a decade ago. Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson recently opined that “sensible people accept the fact of warming” — but apparently not the fact of no-warming. He scorned those “who manipulate the data in transparently bogus ways to claim that warming has halted or even reversed course.” Does he include James Hansen, the famous NASA scientist, among these dastardly manipulators? No one this side of Al Gore has warned as persistently about global warming as Hansen. He nonetheless admits that “the five-year mean global temperature has been flat for a decade.”

Tee-hee. Here’s a fun question: Will global warming go out with a whimper or a bang? Will we just stop hearing about it, or will there be a long, entertaining series of articles about how dumb we’ve been? I hope for the latter but don’t expect it.

- Aggie

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Iceberg Lattice

Did you know that Antarctic sea ice is expanding? Neither did I. All I ever hear about is icebergs falling of because of global warming.

Speaking of which, do you know why Antarctic is expanding?

You guessed it:

Climate change is expanding Antarctica’s sea ice, according to a scientific study in the journal Nature Geoscience.

The paradoxical phenomenon is thought to be caused by relatively cold plumes of fresh water derived from melting beneath the Antarctic ice shelves.

This melt water has a relatively low density, so it accumulates in the top layer of the ocean.

The cool surface waters then re-freeze more easily during Autumn and Winter.

But there are other plausible explanations for Antarctic sea-ice expansion.

Paul Holland of the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) stuck to his findings last year that a shift in winds linked to climate change was blowing ice away from the coast, allowing exposed water in some areas to freeze and make yet more ice.

Did any of these Einsteins stop to think that maybe it was just cold?

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Settled Journalism

Not so easy to settle, is it you ink-stained wretches?

The Economist, which I read and revere and for which I have on occasion written (they assign reviews of books by Economist writers to outsiders), has long been convinced that we on earth face a crisis caused by man-made global warming. Now the newspaper (as it refers to itself) seems to have reached an Emily Litella moment.

“Global warming slows down,” reads a line on the cover. It references a long story in the science and technology section headlined, “A sensitive matter.”

The writer begins by noting something global warming “skeptics” and “deniers” have been pointing to for some time: “Over the past 15 years air temperatures at the Earth’s surface have been flat while greenhouse-gas emissions have continued to soar.”

In other words, the regnant global warming alarmist theory has not accurately predicted the last 15 years of climate.

Forget the past 15 years. How about the past 15 weeks?

Spring: where has it gone?

This long and bitter winter has tested the resilience of life all across the land, from lambing ewes to hatching birds and buds. But what of its toll on us?

[T]he Met Office predicts another month of below-average temperatures, an interminable extension to what naturalist Richard Mabey calls “a long, tedious, taxing late winter”.

Scientists are trying to work out how well different species adapt to this – as well as unpredictable weather. “Species vary very much in their ability to be flexible in the timing of activities,” says phenologist Steve Thackeray of the Centre of Ecology & Hydrology (CEH). Studies by the British Trust for Ornithology found that blue tits have brought forward their average laying dates by 11 days since the 1960s…

I don’t know about their tits, but I’m sure their fingers and toes are turning blue! (Did you think I could resist?)

I’m sure the Global Warmongers out there will seize upon this as proof of their ever screwier hypothesis—something about the interruption of the Gulf Stream by the melting polar ice caps. But as long as great tits are preserved, I’m not worried.

What?! What’d I say?


A pair of Great Tits

That’s straight from Wikipedia, friends. Get your minds out of the gutter.

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Speaking Of Massachusetts Moonbats

A friend sent me this, from a local politician. Clearly, we’re all gonna die.

Preparing for Storm Surge
Posted on March 11, 2013 by Will Brownsberger
Last week’s storm surge, as dramatic as it was on Plum Island, was modest compared to the surges we need to start planning for.

Between sea level rise and greater storm intensity, we are likely to see considerably higher storm surges over the coming decades. Additionally, with higher rainfall, river flooding will become more intense.

Sea walls in the inner harbor normally maintain the Charles and Mystic rivers at levels a few feet below high tide levels. If storm surges overtop these sea walls at the same time that the rivers are flooding, then the Back Bay, the Fenway and other low-lying areas in the communities along the rivers face the possibility of inundation.

Last Tuesday, I spoke on two long-planned panels devoted to the question of how to prepare for higher storm surges — one at Suffolk University and the other under the auspices of the Environmental Business Council of New England, an organization of environmental and energy company businesses. My role on both panels was to discuss legislation that I have filed to better focus the planning process for higher storm surges.

My legislation would require the secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs, working with an advisory panel, to define some scenarios and assign risk levels to them over different time periods — through 2030, 2050 and 2100. The legislation would require state agencies like the MBTA to then estimate the costs of protecting their critical assets in these scenarios.

With that information, public discussion could then move to the question of which assets to protect. We’ll face choices of whether (a) to try to protect assets from flooding by enhancing barriers; (b) to make the assets resilient to flooding — capable of taking a flood and then drying out without much downtime; (c) to leave the assets exposed and take the risks of losing them.

The legislation would not mandate any particular planning response by municipalities, but the new official estimates of risk would prompt many municipalities that are at risk to respond. The City of Boston and the City of Cambridge are both well along in their thinking on these issues. My expectation is that Secretary of EEA would work closely with them through the advisory group contemplated in the legislation.

The City of Boston and the executive branch of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts were both well represented on last week’s panels, as were researchers and advocates. One of the most interesting presentations came from a broker in the reinsurance industry, which has a unique perspective on the increasing rates of storm losses.

In Massachusetts, we face the risk of billions of dollars in storm losses from climate change. I’m hopeful that with the long range view that the leaders of our institutions have, we can overcome inertia and take prudent steps to manage our exposure.

Not that we can avoid the gravest potential consequences in the long run, and not that we are well prepared for the changes that are already evident. But I’m struck by the huge advantages developed countries have in preparing for climate change. In developing countries that lack the social and financial capital to respond, the likely consequence of climate change will be the mass relocation of populations. That’s the scenario that has U.S. military planners most worried — security unravels quickly when large masses of people are on the move.

All the more reason to be focused on mitigating climate change as well as adapting to it – continuing climate change now appears inevitable, but it’s a matter of degrees: We can make choices that affect how far and how fast climate change progresses.

I’m so glad that the politicians in Massachusetts are on this!!

- Aggie

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Global Warming! Climate Change! Mass Panic! We’re All Gonna Die!!

Well, yes, we’re all gonna die, but global warming has been over-hyped, and even the Norwegians acknowledge this

New estimates from a Norwegian research project show meeting targets for minimizing global warming may be more achievable than previously thought.
After the planet’s average surface temperature rose through the 1990s, the increase has almost leveled off at the level of 2000, while ocean water temperature has also stabilized, the Research Council of Norway said in a statement on its website. After applying data from the past decade, the results showed temperatures may rise 1.9 degrees Celsius if Co2 levels double by 2050, below the 3 degrees predicted by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
“The Earth’s mean temperature rose sharply during the 1990s,” said Terje Berntsen, a professor at the University of Oslo who worked on the study. “This may have caused us to overestimate climate sensitivity.”

Climate Change: So 1990′s.

- Aggie

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An Excellent Question

Speaking of Global Warming, how do religions die?

How do religions die? Generally they don’t, which probably explains why there’s so little literature on the subject. Zoroastrianism, for instance, lost many of its sacred texts when Alexander sacked Persepolis in 330 B.C., and most Zoroastrians converted to Islam over 1,000 years ago. Yet today old Zoroaster still counts as many as 210,000 followers, including 11,000 in the U.S. Christopher Hitchens might say you can’t kill what wasn’t there to begin with.

Still, Zeus and Apollo are no longer with us, and neither are Odin and Thor. Among the secular gods, Marx is mostly dead and Freud is totally so. Something did away with them, and it’s worth asking what.

Consider the case of global warming, another system of doomsaying prophecy and faith in things unseen.

As with religion, it is presided over by a caste of spectacularly unattractive people pretending to an obscure form of knowledge that promises to make the seas retreat and the winds abate. As with religion, it comes with an elaborate list of virtues, vices and indulgences. As with religion, its claims are often non-falsifiable, hence the convenience of the term “climate change” when thermometers don’t oblige the expected trend lines. As with religion, it is harsh toward skeptics, heretics and other “deniers.” And as with religion, it is susceptible to the earthly temptations of money, power, politics, arrogance and deceit.

OK, I see his point, but feel compelled to state that I love my religion and I respect other religions. Intellectually snooty atheism isn’t all that attractive.

This week, the conclave of global warming’s cardinals are meeting in Durban, South Africa, for their 17th conference in as many years. The idea is to come up with a successor to the Kyoto Protocol, which is set to expire next year, and to require rich countries to pony up $100 billion a year to help poor countries cope with the alleged effects of climate change. This is said to be essential because in 2017 global warming becomes “catastrophic and irreversible,” according to a recent report by the International Energy Agency.

Yet a funny thing happened on the way to the climate apocalypse. Namely, the financial apocalypse.

The U.S., Russia, Japan, Canada and the EU have all but confirmed they won’t be signing on to a new Kyoto. The Chinese and Indians won’t make a move unless the West does. The notion that rich (or formerly rich) countries are going to ship $100 billion every year to the Micronesias of the world is risible, especially after they’ve spent it all on Greece.

Cap and trade is a dead letter in the U.S. Even Europe is having second thoughts about carbon-reduction targets that are decimating the continent’s heavy industries and cost an estimated $67 billion a year. “Green” technologies have all proved expensive, environmentally hazardous and wildly unpopular duds.

Fun, right? So go to the link to get the rest. He has fun with the new batch of emails.

- Aggie

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