Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #316
Brought to You by SEPP (www.SEPP.org) The Science and Environmental Policy Project
THIS WEEK: By Ken Haapala, President
Constant, Not Accelerating: On May 16, SEPP Chairman emeritus S. Fred Singer had an essay in the Wall Street Journal explaining why there is little humanity and governments can do to stop the constant rate of sea level rise. Unfortunately, in the print edition, the sentence “But there is also good data showing sea levels are in fact rising at a constant rate,” was muddled into reading “But there is also good data showing sea levels are in fact rising at an accelerating rate.” [Boldface added]. The error was corrected in the online editions. The central issue of Singer’s essay is” that sea-level rise does not depend on the use of fossil fuels.”
Singer discusses the melting of the Ross Ice Shelf, part of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, is from below, not above. This may be from geothermal activity along the West Antarctic Rift, a major, active rift valley lying between the far larger East Antarctica and the smaller West Antarctica. Recent research has revealed major geothermal areas under West Antarctica, much of which was previously unknown. Further, it is unknown if the geothermal activity is increasing or decreasing.
As such, with limited knowledge, there is little humanity or governments can do to prevent increases in sea level rise. Unfortunately, in its last assessment report (AR-5, 2013 & 2014) UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPPC) proclaimed that sea level rise was accelerating, without solid evidence. Some government agencies, such as NOAA and NASA, followed, thereby lowering their standards.
Today, NOAA and NASA use two sets of sea level measurements, without carefully calibrating them, and without carefully explaining the difference. In effect, they are recreating one of the main errors in Mr. Mann’s hockey stick – inappropriately combining, associating, two different sets of measurements, from different instruments, to create a trend that does not exist. The two sets of measurements are long-term tidal gages, and short-term satellite measurements. It appears that the short-term satellite calculations have a major issue with proper adjustment – including estimates of the contribution of ice melt in the Antarctic to sea level rise.
Fred Singer sticks with long-term tidal gage data to make the long-term estimate that eventually, in 7,000 years, the Ross Ice Sheet will melt, in a geological time-sense, “collapse.” Of course, many things may intercede with this estimate, such as a new ice age. In his exercise, Singer demonstrates the folly of governments acting on long term predictions without thoroughly understanding the assumptions.
Why NOAA and NASA do not adequately explain their techniques in sea level rise projections, and do not properly calibrate the data sets can only be explained by the leadership of NOAA and NASA. But their actions are instilling unjustified fear of sea level rise, thereby undermining their own credibility. See Article # 1 and links under Changing Cryosphere – Land / Sea Ice.
Quote of the Week. “Reason is ‘more often than not overpowered by non-rational human frailties—ambition, anxiety, status-seeking, face-saving,’ Tuchman points out. ‘Rulers,’ she notes, ‘will justify a bad or wrong decision on the ground, as one historian and partisan wrote of John F. Kennedy, that ‘He had no choice,’ but no matter how equal two alternatives may appear, there is always freedom of choice to change. Yet to recognize error, to cut losses, to alter course, is the most repugnant option in government.’” – Jon Meacham reviewing “The March of Folly: From Troy to Vietnam” by Barbara W. Tuchman (1984), author of “The Guns of August” (WW-I), WSJ, May 17, 2018 [Boldface added]
Econometric Paper: Last week, TWTW discussed a paper by Wallace, D’Aleo, and Idso, which used generally acceptable econometric techniques to remove the influence of volcanoes and the El Niño Southern Oscillation on comprehensive satellite temperature data dating to 1978. The paper also used limited atmospheric data from weather balloons dating to 1959 to estimate and remove the shift in the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) of 1976-77 [which has not been well defined]. The main conclusion of the paper is that there is no statistically significant warming from carbon dioxide. It is important to note that this does not mean that there is no influence from CO2 or other greenhouse gases. But, using strict, accepted statistical techniques, the influence of CO2 cannot be found over this time period.
According to the Mauna Loa Observatory, in 1979 CO2 concentration was 337 ppm (parts per million); in 2016, it was 404 ppm. Based on laboratory evidence, the greenhouse effect of CO2 on temperatures is highly logarithmic, with much of the influence occurring in the first 100 parts per million (ppm). According to some theoretical estimates, by 340 ppm, the graph of the increase in temperatures with increasing CO2 is becoming quite horizontal. Thus, the results of the Wallace, et al. paper are not inconsistent with early theoretically estimates before the 1979 Charney Report. That report made speculative claims about increases in water vapor that have not been substantiated, but the theoretical estimates were based on decades of laboratory experiments.
During a briefing on another subject, Ross McKitrick, expressed doubt that the econometric paper would be published by major journals which focus on climate. Along with Steve McIntyre, McKitrick exposed the folly of Mr. Mann’s hockey-stick (about 2003) and received considerable abuse as a reward. McKitrick is having difficulty getting his new paper, co-written by John Christy, published in a climate journal. This illustrates the problem of getting papers published that dare think outside the box, a box carefully guarded by the climate establishment and the climate modelers. See links under Challenging the Orthodoxy and ftp://aftp.cmdl.noaa.gov/products/trends/co2/co2_annmean_mlo.txt
The Repugnant Option: The quote of the week is particularly meaningful for those who argue against the climate establishment and the projections / predictions of the climate models. Governments have spent tens of billions of dollars producing “climate science” and through tax benefits and other subsidies have spent hundreds of billions “fighting” climate change. Yet, they have little to show for it, other than very expensive computer models that cannot reliability predict atmospheric temperatures, much less climate. John Christy’s repeated tests of the models, showing their failings, must be painful to the modelers.
Barbara W. Tuchman, the author of the quote of the week, was not an established historian when she wrote the highly readable ‘The Guns of August” about the opening phase of World War I. She was criticized for her lack of qualifications. Certainly, she did not have the command of military strategy of B.H. Liddell Hart, a British Army Captain during the war, who demonstrated that it was a watering down of the original 1905 German plan by Graf von Schlieffen, that led to the stalemate, and years of senseless trench warfare. But, Tuchman grasped the human follies that lead to failures in thinking and inept strategies and policies.
The current myth that solar and wind can replace thermal sources of electricity generation such as nuclear and fossil fuel power plants is absurd until a long-lasting, affordable, storage system for electricity is available on a commercial scale. Modern civilization requires reliable and resilient electricity, its nervous system. To call solar, which fails daily, and wind, which fails erratically, “sustainable” is an illustration of human folly.
We can only hope that some of the leaders of the folly will begin to realize that “the most repugnant option in government” is the best one for the public, before they do too much damage. See links under Questioning European Green and Subsidies and Mandates Forever.
Transparency? EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt continues to be attacked by organizations claiming to be scientific but who are more political? His call for transparency in the science forming the basis for EPA regulations a lightning rod. After the comment period closes on May 30, TWTW will review some of the most egregious claims on why transparency is harmful to science. See link under Change in US Administrations.
Demand Response? Writing in Energy Matters, Roger Andrews analyzes on of the myths created by those who assert that the world can be powered entirely by renewables. They assume that “demand response” will force consumers to match future demand with availability of electricity from intermittent generation. Using available residential electricity rates, Andrews evaluates:
“historic demand data from two quite different grids – Denmark and California – to determine what factors have affected demand there and how large these effects are. In both cases demand changes are closely correlated with rapidly rising electricity prices, but these have not resulted in significant demand reductions in Denmark or, arguably, any demand reductions at all in California. Attempts to flatten out California’s ‘duck curve’ have also been unsuccessful despite punitive electricity rates during high-demand periods. The conclusion is that financial incentives and disincentives will not result in the levels of demand response necessary to support an all-renewables world.”
This is another illustration of how myths are incompatible with messy data, and the folly of government officials believing myths. See links under Energy Issues – Non-US.
Future Air Conditioning? We are seeing a spate of articles worrying what will happen if people in the developing world, mostly in tropical or near tropical countries, want air conditioning. The articles focus on the carbon dioxide produced by fossil fuel power plants. What they do not consider, is that the UN is using the Montreal Protocol to limit coolants used in air conditioning. The UN is doing this under the guise of limiting greenhouse gases that may cause ozone depletion.
These actions are making air conditioners less efficient, and larger. Thus, to produce a desired amount of cooling, air conditioners will require more energy. Perhaps geothermal energy is a solution in some places in the world, but not all, and it can be expensive. See links under Defending the Orthodoxy, and Problems in the Orthodoxy.
Number of the Week – 18. In “Table ES-1: Global Warming Potentials (100-Year Time Horizon) Used in this Report” of the EPA’s “Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks, 1990-2016” (April 12, 2018), the EPA lists 18 chemicals as ‘greenhouse gas emissions using “UNFCCC reporting guidelines for national inventories require the use of GWP values from the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) (IPCC 2007).”
The list does not include water vapor (H2O), which is the globe’s dominant greenhouse gas, and speculated in the 1979 Charney Report to greatly amplify CO2-caused global warming. The list includes refrigerants and fire suppressants. The values given for global warming potential range from 1 for carbon dioxide to 22,800 times that for SF6, sulfur hexafluoride, an inorganic, nontoxic, excellent electrical insulator. See links under Defending the Orthodoxy.
SEPP’S APRIL FOOLS AWARD
SEPP is conducting its annual vote for the recipient of the coveted trophy, The Jackson, a lump of coal. Readers are asked to nominate and vote for who they think is most deserving, following these criteria:
· The nominee has advanced, or proposes to advance, significant expansion of governmental power, regulation, or control over the public or significant sections of the general economy.
· The nominee does so by declaring such measures are necessary to protect public health, welfare, or the environment.
· The nominee declares that physical science supports such measures.
· The physical science supporting the measures is flimsy at best, and possibly non-existent.
The six past recipients, Lisa Jackson, Barrack Obama, John Kerry, Ernest Moniz, John Holdren and Christiana Figueres aka Cruella de Ville are not eligible. Generally, the committee that makes the selection prefers a candidate with a national or international presence. The voting will close on July 30. Please send your nominee and a brief reason why the person is qualified for the honor to Ken@SEPP.org. Thank you. The award will be presented at the annual meeting of the Doctors for Disaster Preparedness in August.
NEWS YOU CAN USE:
Climate Change Reconsidered II: Physical Science
Idso, Carter, and Singer, Lead Authors/Editors, 2013
Idso, Idso, Carter, and Singer, Lead Authors/Editors, 2014
Why Scientists Disagree About Global Warming
The NIPCC Report on the Scientific Consensus
By Craig D. Idso, Robert M. Carter, and S. Fred Singer, NIPCC, Nov 23, 2015
Download with no charge
Nature, Not Human Activity, Rules the Climate
S. Fred Singer, Editor, NIPCC, 2008
Physicist Dr. Fred Singer: The Sea Is Rising, but Not Because of Climate Change
There is nothing we can do about it, except to build dikes and sea walls a little bit higher.
By Fred Singer, WSJ, Via The Hockey Schtick, May 15, 2018
Physicist: Climate Scientists Are Giving Science a Bad Name
By James Delingpole, Breitbart, May 14, 2018 [H/t John Dunn]
Link to Essay: Four Questions on Climate Change
By Garth Paltridge, GWPF, May 2018
Comment on “Examination of space-based bulk atmospheric temperatures used in climate research” by Christy et al. (2018)
By Staff Writers, CO2 Science, May 14, 2018
Link to paper: Comment on “Examination of space-based bulk atmospheric temperatures
used in climate research” by John R. Christy et al.
By Wallace, D’Aleo & Idso, Independent release, May 2018
Press Release on New Research Report Showing CO2 Has No Significant Effect on Temperatures
By Alan Carlin, Carlin Economics and Science, May 13, 2018
Comment on “Examination of space-based bulk atmospheric temperatures used in climate research”
By Staff Writers, ICECAP, May 13, 2018
The Science and Climate Ignorance of Society Needs Correcting, But How? Some Thoughts
By Tim Ball, A Different Perspective, May 16, 2018
Defending the Orthodoxy
UN Secretary General: Climate Change an “Existential Threat” to Humanity
Guest essay by Eric Worrall, WUWT, May 15, 2018
[SEPP Comment: Climate change has been ongoing long before humanity existed. According to the UN head, it is a threat to the existence of humanity?]
Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks, 1990-2016
By Staff Writers, EPA, April 12, 2018
Why we’re suing ExxonMobil and Suncor
By Elise Jones and Kris Holstrom, Denver Post, May 4, 2018
Link: Climate Accountability
By Staff, The Colorado communities of Boulder County, San Miguel County, and the City of Boulder have come together to launch a crucial effort in response to climate change.
Why Tort Action Against Fossil Fuel Producers Is a Good Idea
Bu David Bookbinder, Niskanen Center, May 14, 2018
“Fortunately, local governments can pursue these claims with few or no resources. For instance, the Niskanen Center, along with our co-counsel at Earthrights International, are representing the Colorado plaintiffs (including San Miguel County, population less than 8,000) pro bono, so it is not costing those governments a penny to pursue legal recourse. And Richmond, California (as in City of Richmond v. Chevron) is not exactly swank.”
[SEPP Comment: Lawyers chasing a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, disregarding the need for physical evidence that CO2 causes harm.]
Powerful investors push big companies to plan for climate change
This spring, Wall Street seems more accepting of climate science as shareholders demand plans to reduce risks
By David Rauf, Salon, May 7, 2018
The Conversation: UN Security Council Should Crackdown to Enforce the Paris Climate Agreement
Guest essay by Eric Worrall, WUWT, May 15, 2018
Questioning the Orthodoxy
More On The “Science” Behind The Global Warming Scare
By Francis Menton, Manhattan Contrarian, May 14, 2018
Picking and Choosing
By Donn Dears, Power For USA, May 15, 2018
Some Perspective On Efforts To Reduce Carbon Dioxide Emissions
By Francis Menton, Manhattan Contrarian, May 13, 2018
Let the Paris climate deal die. It was never good for anything, anyway
Opinion: Paris is a climate fairy tale. It has always been more about money and politics than the environment
By Bruce Pardy, Financial Post, Canada, May 18, 2018
Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science
EPA Comment period ends May 30, 2018.
Social Benefits of Carbon
Claim: U.N. data reflects greening of the Earth, not carbon dioxide
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, May 15, 2018
Link to paper: Forest resources of nations in relation to human well-being
By Pekka E. Kauppi, Vilma Sandström , Antti Lipponen, Plos One, May 14, 2018
From the abstract: “The forest area of western Europe expanded already in the 19th century. Such early trends of forest resources cannot be associated with the rapid rise of atmospheric carbon dioxide nor with the anthropogenic climate change, which have taken place since the mid-20th century.”
[SEPP Comment; Why does the UN IPCC associate the warming of the planet since 1850 with CO2?]
I Love Carbon Dioxide and You Should Too
By Gregory Wrightstone, ICECAP, May 18, 2018
“Although I do not pretend to speak for the planet’s flora, I am quite certain that, if plants had a say in the matter, they would not lobby for reductions in CO2 levels. For plants, CO2 is food. They need more of it, not less.”
A question that gives pause: If Solar And Wind Are So Cheap, Why Are They Making Electricity So Expensive?
By Michael Shellenberger, President, Environmental Progress., WUWT, May 16, 2018
The World Wants Air-Conditioning. That Could Warm the World.
By Kendra Pierre-Louis, New York Times, May 15, 2018
Link to report: The Future of Cooling
By Staff Writers, EIA, 2018
Climate Heresy…German DLF National Public Radio Reports Observed Hurricane Changes Are Natural!
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, May 13, 2018
Ooops. Despite Montreal Protocol, ozone-destroying CFC’s on the rise
NOAA finds rising emissions of ozone-destroying chemical banned by Montreal Protocol
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, May 17, 2018
Link to paper: An unexpected and persistent increase in global emissions of ozone-depleting CFC-11
By Stephen A. Montzka, et al. Nature, May 16, 2018
Seeking a Common Ground
By Martin Livermore, The Scientific Alliance, May 18, 2018
Hearing on Using Technology to Address Climate Change
By Judith Curry, Climate Etc. May 16, 2018
Statement to the House Committee on Science, Space & Technology
By Judith Curry, Climate Forecast Applications Network, May 16, 2018
Visualizing the U.S. Clean Air Success Story
By Dan Byers, Global Energy Institute, US Chamber of Commerce, Apr 21, 2018 [H/t J Rust]
Review of Recent Scientific Articles by CO2 Science
More Irrefutable Evidence of Small Island Stability In the Face of Climate Change
Duvat, V.K.E., Salvar, B. and Salmon, C. 2017. Drivers of shoreline change in atoll reef islands of the Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia. Global and Planetary Change 158: 134-154, May 18, 2018
“Clearly, as summarily concluded by Duvat et al., atoll reef islands ‘are robust landforms.’ They are not collectively in danger of drowning in the depths of the sea due to climate change. The models have got it wrong and those who rely on the models have got it wrong. Nature is much more resilient than the alarmists make it out to be.”
No Long-term Warming in a 300-Year Temperature Reconstruction for the Tibetan Plateau
Li, M., Huang, L., Yin, Z.-Y. and Shao, X. 2017. Temperature reconstruction and volcanic eruption signal from tree-ring width and maximum latewood density over the past 304 years in the southeastern Tibetan Plateau. International Journal of Biometeorology 61: 2021-2032, May 17, 2018
The Reproductive Tolerance of a Temperate Coral to Ocean Acidification
Gizzi, F., de Mas, L., Airi, V., Caroselli, E., Prada, F., Falini, G., Dubinsky, Z. and Goffredo, S. 2017. Reproduction of an azooxanthellate coral is unaffected by ocean acidification. Scientific Reports 7: 13049, DOI: 10.1038/s41598-017-13393-1. May 17, 2018
Models v. Observations
New study finds variations in global warming trend are caused by oceans
Press Release, University of Southampton, May 9, 2018
Link to paper: The relation between natural variations in ocean heat uptake and global mean surface temperature anomalies in CMIP5
By Sybren Drijfhout, Nature, Scientific Reports, May 9, 2018
6 New Papers: Climate Models Are Literally Worth ZERO – Even Water Vapor + Feedback ‘Does Not Exist’
By Kenneth Richard, No Tricks Zone, May 17, 2018
Study: Climate Models Need More Historical Fudge Factors
Guest essay by Eric Worrall, WUWT, May 16, 2018
Regional Climate Sensitivity‐ and Historical‐Based Projections to 2100
By Raphaël Hébert and Shaun Lovejoy, Geophysical Research Letters, Mar 13, 2018
Measurement Issues — Surface
Don’t Tell Anyone, But We Just Had Two Years Of Record-Breaking Global Cooling
Editorial, IBD, May 16, 2018
Measurement Issues – Missing Heat
Increased Cloud Production caused Global Warming Hiatus, New Study
By Staff Writers, GWPF, May 16, 2018
Link to paper: Decadal evolution of the surface energy budget during the fast warming and global warming hiatus periods in the ERA-interim
By Xiaoming Hu, Sergio A. Sejas, Ming Cai, Patrick C. Taylor, Yi Deng, and Song Yang, Climate Dynamics, May 14, 2018
Trenberth finds his missing heat in Hurricane Harvey
Record-breaking ocean heat fueled Hurricane Harvey
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, May 11, 2018
Link to paper: Hurricane Harvey links to Ocean Heat Content and Climate Change Adaptation
By Trenberth, Cheng, Jacobs, Zhang & Fasullo, Earth’s Future, May 9, 2018
[SEPP Comment: Why does NCAR, National Center for Atmospheric Research, of which Trenberth is an important influence, systematically ignore atmospheric data in declaring “human‐caused climate change is supercharging them [hurricanes] and exacerbating the risk of major damage?”]
An extremely rare cyclone off the coast of Chile
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, May 11, 2018
Junk Scientists Weaponising Weather
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, May 13, 2018
Japan’s Media Blackout: Findings That Hurricane Intensity Driven By Natural Oceanic Cycles Go Unreported
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, May 15, 2018
Link to Press Release on Atlantic Hurricanes (Cyclones): Powerful hurricanes strengthen faster now than 30 years ago
The storms intensify more rapidly today due largely to a natural climate phenomenon
By Tom Rickey, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and DOE, May 7, 2018
Link to paper: Increasing Magnitude of Hurricane Rapid Intensification in the Central and Eastern Tropical Atlantic
By Karthik Balaguru, Gregory R. Foltz and L. Ruby Leung, Geophysical Research Letters, May 3, 2018
“Conspiring changes in the large‐scale hurricane environment brought about by a positive shift in the phase of the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation, the dominant mode of decadal climate variability in the Atlantic, are primarily responsible for these changes in RI.” [Rapid Intensification]
Tail wagging the dog: Changes in ENSO Activity During the Last 6,000 Years Modulated by Background Climate State
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, May 13, 2018
Remember when were told sea creatures couldn’t run from global warming? Never mind.
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, May 17, 2018
Link to paper: Marine invertebrate migrations trace climate change over 450 million years
By Carl J. Reddin, Ádám T. Kocsis, and Wolfgang Kiessling, Global Ecology and Biogeography, Apr 3, 2018
A seismic transect across West Antarctica: Evidence for mantle thermal anomalies beneath the Bentley Subglacial Trench and the Marie Byrd Land Dome
By Andrew Lloyd, et al, Journal of Geophysical Research, Nov 12, 2015
Polar bear habitat update mid-May: little change since 1989 despite CO2 increase
By Susan Crockford, Polar Bear Science, May 15, 2018
The effect of volcanoes on climate and climate on volcanoes
By Javier, via Andy May, WUWT, May 10, 2018
Agriculture Issues & Fear of Famine
Remember when global warming was going to kill the U.S. Corn Belt? Never mind.
Climate change should help Midwest corn production through 2050
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, May 16, 2018
[SEPP Comment: Will the trend for the past 50 years continue for the next 50 years?]
Communicating Better to the Public – Make things up.
Europe’s Top Climate Scientist Loses It: Claims Mankind Now Undergoing Climate-Related “Collective Suicide Attempt”…Rapid “Mass Extinction”!
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, May 16, 2018
“Outgoing director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) believes mankind, through its activities, is headed for a “mass extinction” event and an anthropogenic calamity comparable to a geological scale asteroid hit.”
Democrat Jay Inslee Compares His Fight for Carbon Tax to Nelson Mandela’s Fight Against Apartheid
By Brent Scher, Washington Free Beacon, May 15, 2018
Communicating Better to the Public – Go Personal.
King County v. BP, Chevron, ExxonMobil, Royal Dutch and ConocoPhillips
By Russel Cook, Gelbspan Files, May 17, 2018
Expanding the Orthodoxy
Dana Nuccitelli: Support a Carbon Tax or Climate will Punish Trump Voters
Guest essay by Eric Worrall, WUWT May 12, 2018
Link to study: Temperature and Growth: A Panel Analysis of the United States
By Riccardo Colacito, Bridget Hoffmann, and Toan Phan, Richmond Federal Reserve Bank, Mar 30, 2018
[SEPP Comment: How does this study compare with the Boston Federal Reserve Bank study claiming that real estate prices would never fall – immediately before the 2008 crash?]
Norwegian gas exporter warns Europe may be on verge of blackouts
Europe is facing power generation capacity shortages and may even risk blackouts without additional use of natural gas, one of the continent’s biggest producers of the fuel said.
By Staff Writers, Bloomberg, May 16, 2018
Energy poverty and the home truths MPs would rather ignore
By Harry Wilkinson, The Conservative Woman, UK, May 18, 2018 [H/t GWPF]
Link to the Review: Cost of Energy Review
By Dieter Helm, Oct 25, 2017
“Why has the Government still not formally responded to the independent review that it commissioned into the cost of energy? Perhaps its findings are too damning. Staggeringly, the review found that the government has wasted the best part of £100billion on the decarbonisation of the power sector.”
Investment in UK Clean Energy Suffers ‘Dramatic and Worrying Collapse’
By Staff Writers, Financial Times, Via GWPF, May 16, 2018
MP Heappey Lets Cat Out Of Bag
“’It will be very challenging when we have to start telling people that they need to reduce their consumption of meat, milk, cheese and everything else in the interest of decarbonisation, but that conversation is surely coming.’” – Member of Parliament, and wind promoter.
“As some of us have been warning for a while, the mad dash to decarbonise can only mean drastically reduced standards of living.”
German Green Energy Only “Efficient” If Everyone Else’s Is Inefficient, Says German Minister Of Economics
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, May 18, 2018
German coal phase-out commission to balance jobs with climate
Leaked strategy paper leads on jobs and calls for environmental concerns to be ‘harmonised’ with economic development
By Benjamin Wehrmann for Clean Energy Wire, Climate Home News, May 17, 2018
The High Cost of the United Kingdom’s Energy Policy (Helm study indicates mainstream concern)
By Mark Ahlseen, Master Resource, May 15, 2018
Aussie CliSci Budget Woes
News Brief by Kip Hansen, WUWT, May 11, 2018
Link: Australian scientists welcome boosts in new federal budget
By Dennis Normile, Science Mag. May 9, 2018
Oil, natural gas industry spends billions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, report says
By Josh Siegel, Washington Examiner, May 15, 2018
Link to report: Key Investments in Greenhouse Gas Mitigation Technologies:
From 2000 Through 2016 by Oil and Gas Companies, Other Industry and the Federal Government
By Thomas Tanton, T@ and Associates, April 2018 [for American Petroleum Institute]
The Political Games Continue
Democrats’ dark money and the climate industrial complex
By Rupert Darwall, Washington Examiner, May 18, 2018 [H/t Cooler Heads]
Oil Companies Ask Judge to Kill NYC’s Global Warming Lawsuit
By Bob Van Voris, Bloomberg, May 4, 2018
SCOOP: NY Court Will Be Asked To Force Eric Schneiderman To Release Personal Emails
By Michael Bastasch, Daily Caller, May 17, 2018
With Schneiderman’s resignation, will the climate litigation racket weaken?
By Marlo Lewis, Jr. CEI, WUWT, May 12, 2018
“Thus, as the great 19th century French economist Frédéric Bastiat observed, ‘When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men in a society, over the course of time they create for themselves a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it.’”
Global warming lawsuit could hammer OK, other states
Editorial, The Oklahoman, May 7, 2018
Judge strikes down Oakland’s ban on shipping coal through port
By Staff Writers, Bloomberg, May 15, 2018
Flawed Windfarm Subsidies Will Add £1.5BN to Bills [to British consumers]
By Emily Gosden, The Times, Via GWPF, May 16, 2018
EPA and other Regulators on the March
Excessive Caution at EPA Produces Absurd Conclusions
By Angela Logomasini, CEI, May 16, 2018
Energy Issues – Non-US
Why “demand response” won’t work
By Roger Andrews, Energy Matters, May 17, 2018
Why IEA, OPEC and EIA have such different outlooks for energy consumption
By Staff Writers, Consultancy, UK, May 16, 2018
“Predicting future energy consumption trends is a hazardous science. It is plagued with guesswork related to ‘known unknowns’ and ‘unknown unknowns’. Even leading scientific reports differ considerably in their analysis of current resources and projections for the future of energy. An assessment of this troubled political and scientific landscape from UMS Group, a boutique energy and utilities management consulting firm, compares four major predictions of how energy consumption will change over the next 25 years.”
Time to Wake the Odd Man of Asia
Guest essay by Viv Forbes, WUWT, May 15, 2018
Madness in Court as Politicians Are Caught Out In Fantasy Over Fracking
By Michael Glacking, The Sunday Times, Via GWPF, May 13, 2018
Energy Crisis: More than Half of Smart Meters ‘Go Dumb’ After Switching [Suppliers]
By Staff Writers, Daily Telegraph, Via GWPF, May 13, 2018
Energy Issues — Australia
Australia’s national energy market is run by a lawyer and climate changey activist
By Jo Nova, Her Blog, May 13, 2018
Link to article: Donald Trump’s corporate refugees
By Patrick Durkin, Financial Review, Jan 30, 2018
“One of Hillary Clinton’s hot picks to lead the United States Department of Energy has been appointed as chief executive of the Australian Energy Market Operator, as part of the political and corporate exodus in the wake of Donald Trump’s upset election victory.”
Energy Issues — US
The homeland threat to affordable US energy
By Lucian Pugliaresi, The Hill, May 9, 2018
A Crisis In Electric Power Everyone Is Ignoring
By Stephen Moore, IBD, May 15, 2018
[SEPP Comment: How to keep reliability and resilience when major thermal plants shut down?]
Washington’s Control of Energy
Drilling Plan Is Good for Consumers — and the Environment
By Ross Marchand, Real Clear Energy, May 9, 2018
Oil and Natural Gas – the Future or the Past?
The efficiency of US shale oil drilling and production
By Euan Mearns, Energy Matters, May 14, 2018
Return of King Coal?
Plant of the future? DOE seeks info on small, modular coal
By Robert Walton, Utility Dive, May 8, 2018 [H/t Toshio Fujita]
Link to report: Natural gas and renewables make up most of 2018 electric capacity additions
By Ray Chen, et al. EIA, May 7, 2018
[SEPP Comment: One of the advantages of large coal-fired power plants in northern states is the ability to store 30-day supply of fuel on site.]
U.S. Coal Industry Growth
By Andy May, WUWT, May 17, 2018
Global Patsy Australia — largest coal exporter in world — still has 300 years of coal left
By Jo Nova, Her Blog, May 19, 2018
Nuclear Energy and Fears
NuScale’s Small Modular Nuclear Reactor Passes Biggest Hurdle Yet
By James Conca, Forbes, May 15, 2018
Perry scraps completion of US MOX facility
By Staff Writers, World Nuclear News, May 16, 2018 [H/t Toshio Fujita]
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Solar and Wind
GE announces monster 12 megawatt wind turbine – nearly as tall as the Eiffel Tower
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, May 10, 2018
Link to Web Site: Haliade-X 12 Offshore Wind Turbine Platform
By Staff Writers, GE Renewable Energy, Accessed, May 17, 2018
“The Haliade-X 12 MW also features a 63% capacity factor*
“*Capacity factor compares how much energy was generated against the maximum that could have been produced at continuous full power operation during a specific period of time.”
Installed Wind Capacity: The Rest of the Story
By Donn Dears, Master Resource, May 16, 2018
Excess Wind at ERL
By Andrew Montford, GWPF, May 17, 2018
Link to paper: Changes in European wind energy generation potential within a 1.5 °C warmer world
By J Scott Hosking, et al. Environmental Research Letters, May 17, 2018
From the article:
“So the recipe is as follows: 1) Build model, 2) Fudge to make global average on interest look right, 3) Fudge to make local measure of interest look right, 4) Make inferences about future, and 5) Move swiftly onwards and hope nobody checks your work.”
Germany must prepare for “wind turbine decommissioning wave”
By Hinrich Neumann, Top Agrar, Via Clean Energy Wire, Ger. May 15, 2018
Is this the start of the death-spiral for old windfarms in Europe
By Jo Nova, Her Blog, May 14, 2018
Link to paper: Lifetime extension of onshore wind turbines: A review covering Germany,
Spain, Denmark, and the UK
By Lisa Ziegler, et al. Renewalbe and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 82 (2018) 12861-1271
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Energy — Other
£23bn goes up in smoke! Chris Huhne’s pet scheme to fit ‘green’ energy boilers is open to fraud and makes pollution worse
Billions wasted as only 60,000 boilers installed in four years amid pollution fear
The Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) could also be open to fraud, it has emerged
Ministers wanted five times the number of new systems installed under scheme
By Daniel Martin, Daily Mail, May 15, 2018
“Half were boilers that burn biomass such as wood,’which cause a ‘serious public health issue’ by pumping out smoke and worsening local air quality, said the Commons public accounts committee.”
The ethanol gravy train rolls on
Opponents make compelling case but can’t derail or even slow this well-protected industry
Guest opinion by Paul Driessen, WUWT, May 14, 2018
Will Battle Between ‘Big Corn’ And ‘Big Oil’ Stall Next Generation Biofuels?
By Aaron Smith and Vincent Smith, IBD, May 16, 2018
Burn coal not wood if you care about the climate
By Jo Nova, Her Blog, May 18, 2018
Swansea Bay Costings
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, May 12, 2018
“I showed this calculation in my post yesterday, but it goes to the heart of the economic argument about the value of Swansea Bay.
“By Shorrock’s own admission, running costs will be £30/MWh, all to generate electricity worth £45/MWh.
“In other words, there will be added value of £15/MWh, which based on annual output of 550 GWh equates to £8.25m a year.
“On what planet would such a paltry return on an investment of £1.3bn even be considered?
[SEPP Comment: And the promoter owns the closed quarry, where the stone is to be mined?]
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Energy — Storage
AWEA 2018: Storage is ‘like bacon’
By David Weston, Wind Power Monthly, May 9, 2018 [H/t Toshio Fujita]
[SEPP Comment: More like necessary food and water.]
Did Tesla’s Big Australian Battery Kill the Business Case for More?
There might not be much of an ancillary services market left for other projects.
By Jason Deign, GTM, May 18, 2018
“Figures show that Tesla’s “big battery” in South Australia is so good at delivering frequency control ancillary services (FCAS) that there might not be much room left for copycat projects.”
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Vehicles
Short Circuit: the High Cost of Electric Vehicle Subsidies”
By Jonathan A. Lesser, Continental Economics, May 2018
“The economic value of CO2 emissions reductions associated with ZEVs is effectively zero.”
California Climate Change
By Staff Writers, California government, Accessed May 15, 2018
[SEPP Comment: The key points are: 1) Increase Renewable Electricity Production to 50%, 2) Reduce Petroleum Use by 50% in Vehicles, 3) Double Energy Efficiency Savings at Existing Buildings, 4) Reduce GHG Emissions from Natural and Working Lands, 5, Reduce Short-Lived Climate Pollutants and 5) Safeguard California — with no explanation of how?]
California Warns of a Second Energy Crisis
By Mark Chediak, Bloomberg, May 3, 2018 [H/t Toshio Fujita]
California’s Boneheaded Solar Remedy for Climate Change
Good intentions can make for awful policies.
By Steve Chapman, Reason.com, May 14, 2018
Health, Energy, and Climate
Pollution-related disease presents global environmental challenge
By Cheryl Dybas, NSF, May 144, 2018
“The scientists cite the example of exposure to fine particulate matter from indoor and outdoor combustion, such as fires for cookstoves. ‘These particulates are a major cause of premature deaths,’ says Filippelli, ‘but it’s a problem mostly faced by people in low- and middle-income nations.’”
Statistical shenanigan behind air pollution studies revealed
Brilliant investigative work from Dr. Stan Young and colleagues.
By Steve Milloy, Junk Science.com, May 14, 2018
Link to paper: Time series smoother for eﬀect detection
By Cheng You, Dennis K.J. Lin, and S. Stanley Young, Plos One, Apr 23, 2018
Other News that May Be of Interest
How low can Venezuela oil output go?
By Staff Writers, Kallanish Energy, May 8, 2018
“With inflation expected by the IMF at over 13,000% this year, a starving population, growing crime and a massive workforce exodus, Venezuela is struggling to keep up oil production levels.”
Hippocratic Oath vs. ‘Hypocritic’ Oath?
By Charles G. Battig, American Thinker, May 14, 2018
BELOW THE BOTTOM LINE:
The projected effect on insects, vertebrates, and plants of limiting global warming to 1.5°C rather than 2°C
By R. Warren, J. Price, E. Graham, N. Forstenhaeusler, and J. VanDerWal, Science Mag, May 18, 2018
[SEPP Comment: Precise measurement of wild guesses?]
UK: What impact is climate change having on cricket?
Rain-stopped play is not what you want to see if you’re a cricket fan. Could it become an increasingly common sight?
By Staff Writers, Alijazeera.com, May 16, 2018
“That’s why the sport must take notice of a report published by Climate Coalition, the UK’s largest climate change action group, in February.
“The document names cricket as the sport that will be hardest hit by climate change in England, stating that ‘wetter winters and more intense summer downpours are disrupting the game at every level’”.
[SEPP Comment: Is this more serious than the snow and ice in the Himalayan Mountains melting by 2035?]
Get in quick
By Staff Writers, Climate Change Predictions.org, May 17, 2018
“Tokyo governor Shintaro Ishihara warned on Wednesday the 2016 Olympics could be the last Games, with global warming an immediate threat to mankind. “It could be that the 2016 Games are the last Olympics in the history of mankind,” Ishihara told reporters at a Tokyo 2016 press event ahead of the vote.
“’Global warming is getting worse. We have to come up with measures without which Olympic Games could not last long. Scientists have said we have passed the point of no return,’ said Ishihara.” Reuters, 30 Sep 2009
Monkeys on the move
By Staff Writers, Climate Change Predictions.org, May 13, 2018
The white-bearded De Brazza’s monkeys were found in the Great Rift Valley, a place they had never been spotted before, Richard Leakey, a prominent white Kenyan credited with ending the slaughter of the nation’s elephants, told Reuters in Nairobi. “That is telling us a lot about the climate change scenarios we are looking at now,” he said. “It puts climate change as the most critical consideration as we plan for the future.” Planet Ark, 1 Nov 2007
[SEPP Comment: Also, we have another member of the general primate family which moved out of east Africa to places where they did not inhabit about 200,000 years ago. Was it due to climate change?]
1. The Sea Is Rising, but Not Because of Climate Change
There is nothing we can do about it, except to build dikes and sea walls a little bit higher.
The Chairman emeritus of SEPP writes:
“Of all known and imagined consequences of climate change, many people fear sea-level rise most. But efforts to determine what causes seas to rise are marred by poor data and disagreements about methodology. The noted oceanographer Walter Munk referred to sea-level rise as an “enigma”; it has also been called a riddle and a puzzle.
“It is generally thought that sea-level rise accelerates mainly by thermal expansion of sea water, the so-called steric component. But by studying a very short time interval, it is possible to sidestep most of the complications, like “isostatic adjustment” of the shoreline (as continents rise after the overlying ice has melted) and “subsidence” of the shoreline (as ground water and minerals are extracted).
“I chose to assess the sea-level trend from 1915-45, when a genuine, independently confirmed warming of approximately 0.5 degree Celsius occurred. I note particularly that sea-level rise is not affected by the warming; it continues at the same rate, 1.8 millimeters a year, according to a 1990 review by Andrew S. Trupin and John Wahr. I therefore conclude—contrary to the general wisdom—that the temperature of sea water has no direct effect on sea-level rise. That means neither does the atmospheric content of carbon dioxide.
“This conclusion is worth highlighting: It shows that sea-level rise does not depend on the use of fossil fuels. The evidence should allay fear that the release of additional CO2 will increase sea-level rise.
“But there is also good data showing sea levels are in fact rising at a constant rate. The trend has been measured by a network of tidal gauges, many of which have been collecting data for over a century.
“The cause of the trend is a puzzle. Physics demands that water expand as its temperature increases. But to keep the rate of rise constant, as observed, expansion of sea water evidently must be offset by something else. What could that be? I conclude that it must be ice accumulation, through evaporation of ocean water, and subsequent precipitation turning into ice. Evidence suggests that accumulation of ice on the Antarctic continent has been offsetting the steric effect for at least several centuries.
“It is difficult to explain why evaporation of seawater produces approximately 100% cancellation of expansion. My method of analysis considers two related physical phenomena: thermal expansion of water and evaporation of water molecules. But if evaporation offsets thermal expansion, the net effect is of course close to zero. What then is the real cause of sea-level rise of 1 to 2 millimeters a year?
“Melting of glaciers and ice sheets adds water to the ocean and causes sea levels to rise. (Recall though that the melting of floating sea ice adds no water to the oceans, and hence does not affect the sea level.) After the rapid melting away of northern ice sheets, the slow melting of Antarctic ice at the periphery of the continent may be the main cause of current sea-level rise.
“All this, because it is much warmer now than 12,000 years ago, at the end of the most recent glaciation. Yet there is little heat available in the Antarctic to support melting.
“We can see melting happening right now at the Ross Ice Shelf of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. Geologists have tracked Ross’s slow disappearance, and glaciologist Robert Bindschadler predicts the ice shelf will melt completely within about 7,000 years, gradually raising the sea level as it goes.
“Of course, a lot can happen in 7,000 years. The onset of a new glaciation could cause the sea level to stop rising. It could even fall 400 feet, to the level at the last glaciation maximum 18,000 years ago.
“Currently, sea-level rise does not seem to depend on ocean temperature, and certainly not on CO2. We can expect the sea to continue rising at about the present rate for the foreseeable future. By 2100 the seas will rise another 6 inches or so—a far cry from Al Gore’s alarming numbers. There is nothing we can do about rising sea levels in the meantime. We’d better build dikes and sea walls a little bit higher.”
Mr. Singer is a professor emeritus of environmental science at the University of Virginia. He founded the Science and Environmental Policy Project and the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change.
2. New York’s Green Energy Roulette
Gov. Cuomo uses up his state’s electricity margin of safety to advance his career.
By Holman W. Jenkins, Jr., WSJ, May 15, 2018
Link to report: 2018 Power Trends: New York’s Dynamic Power Grid
By Staff Writers, New York Independent System Operator (NYISO), 2018
After commenting on the claim in the New York Times that Eric Schneiderman was one of the “good” ones, the columnist writes:
“Of course, the problem here is assuming that sharing one’s politics is tantamount to being a ‘good’ person. So anyone who differs is ‘bad’? This only shuts out unwelcome truths and aids the state’s residency in fantasyland.
“Take the explosion of political correctness out of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s mouth at an event last Thursday when questioned by green activists. ‘I don’t build any fossil-fuel plants anymore, and I banned fracking, and I have the most aggressive renewable goals in the country,’ he insisted, according to Politico.com. He also credited himself with blocking new pipelines.
“Some of these claims are untrue; all are perverse.
“Mr. Cuomo banned fracking in New York, but that didn’t stop fracking. It only deprived New Yorkers of their share of jobs and prosperity that other states are enjoying.
“Gas plants have been approved on his watch, including one at the heart of a corruption scandal that will send one of his closest former aides to jail.
“His opposition to pipelines runs flat into his signature scheme to get 50% of the state’s power from renewables by 2030. A new report from the state grid manager could not be clearer: The report uses the word ‘reliability’ 155 times and warns that new gas plants are urgently needed to support the governor’s wind and solar goals.
“New Yorkers find energy a fitting subject for irrational gestures only because they haven’t yet paid the cost in blackouts and intolerable price hikes. That will change.
“Mr. Cuomo’s renewables goal was subject to no cost-benefit analysis—because there is no benefit. New York accounts for 0.4% of global greenhouse emissions.
“Germany shows and a new study of 10 nations confirms: Investing heavily in wind and solar doesn’t really reduce fossil-fuel use or fossil-fuel emissions. Why? Adding solar and wind as adornments to a basically functioning grid is one thing. Once you begin relying on them, however, each must be paired with an equivalent gas plant for when wind and sun are absent.
“This is expensive, and the outage risk remains, not just because the grid must cope with a proliferation of unpredictable, intermittent power sources. Coal plants, which New York state has been closing willy-nilly, maintain 30 days of fuel on site. The state’s biggest nuclear plant, which Gov. Cuomo is closing, requires refueling only every two years.
“In contrast, gas plants depend on just-in-time fuel delivery from an interstate pipeline system, connected to producing areas (which, thanks to Mr. Cuomo, New York isn’t).
“In 2014’s polar vortex, the Northeast and the Midwest avoided blackouts by burning dirty oil in gas plants when pipelines became overloaded, and grid operators still had to cut voltage by 5% to keep heat and lights on. If the same thing happened today, it’s doubtful that blackouts could be avoided.
“Mr. Cuomo privately would argue his green posturing protects New Yorkers from worse. Whoever wins the Democratic primary is likely to be the next governor. His primary opponent is ‘Sex and the City’ actress Cynthia Nixon, who wants 100% of the state’s energy from renewables by 2050.
“A feature and not a bug is the incoherence of both candidates’ green button-pushing. Closing the Indian Point nuclear plant, for instance, which both joyously support, would mainly deprive New York of its most important source of climate-friendly energy.
“The problem is, Mr. Cuomo intends to run for president in 2020, so his pandering will have to continue for another two years while the state burns through its energy safety margin.
“Let’s borrow a concept from technologist Peter Thiel, who once noted President Obama’s ‘touching faith’ in capitalism to support the burdens he placed on it.
“Careers like Mr. Cuomo’s are built on running down what might be called ‘good policy’ political capital. Mr. Cuomo is using up the state’s margin of energy survival to burnish his green potentials. He is sacrificing upstate’s economy to burnish his green credentials.
“President Trump may lack decorum, but his corporate tax reform addressed a universally recognized problem, and now future politicians have a fresh cushion for antibusiness tax gestures without unduly risking the economy.
“Ditto his trimming back of President Obama’s expensive but ineffectual climate policies: Now future politicians can dip their buckets in this well to advance their careers without overtaxing the citizenry’s ability to sustain costly climate gestures that produce no benefit.
“This is the good-policy capital buffer at work. Mr. Cuomo is doing statewide what Mayor David Dinkins did for New York City in the early 1990s, using up the buffer.”
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